A friend posted this at a site and I want to believe he is wrong "Becoming 'energy independant' is folly for the rich." Solar pannels with acces to "the grid" are silly. There is roughly 1.6kWh available in full sun in any given M^2. Best case current panels achieve 20% eff, meaning that BEST CASE one can expect 1.6 * .2 or .8 kWh per M^2 * full sun hours. Life af a solar panel is ~ 20 years. Assuming that there is a grid connection and that all unused kWh can be sold back to the grid at the same rate charged (rarely true) to cover the uasae of a 100kWh/day home one would need to have 125 M^2 of solar panels @ a cost of ~ $100/M^2. The up-front investment would then be $125k for the pannels alone. Actual cost would be ~ $200+k The current cost of energy is about $0.10/kWh which means that current fixed cost ot 100kWh/day energy is $300/month and the "up-Front cost of "going green" is ~$1000/ month for a 30 year rate of 5%. With an expected life of 20 years the expected "pay off" is closer to 50 years, hence the only way to "win" is tax credits... or, "folly for the rich". If you cannot afford a $135k upfront charge, then you cannot afford to use "free" energy. to become "independant of the grid". a simple way to encourage him to proceed with plans to 'upgrade' his house would be very welcome. Or is he correct and we should just forget trying to do it?