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Solar Paneling May Soon Take Off In The U.S.

(credit: John Ostapkovich)

(credit: John Ostapkovich)

John Ostapkovich John Ostapkovich
John Ostapkovich brings humor and wit, and a wealth of experience...
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By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – We’re seeing a lot more sun these days, as spring unfolds, but are we using it more? A solar power advocate says that may be about to take off.

Germany is not known for abundant sunshine yet millions of its rooftops sport solar panels due to a full-court press from government.

Neville Williams, author of Sun Power, says PV (or photovoltaic) power proved a perfect fit in the Third World where there was no grid to be on or off, but here, “We have 50 states, 550 utilities, many different laws and we have an imbedded fossil fuel industry that doesn’t want to give an inch.”

Williams expects bottom-up adoption of solar here. Prices are down. There’s still a federal tax rebate, but people wonder if those panels ugly up there on the roof.

“Wooden power poles are ugly. We don’t see them anymore because they’re everywhere and they’ve been with us for 100 years. Solar panels are not ugly.”

Williams figures we’ll get to make our own judgment more and more.

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