The rapid shift from fossil fuel-powered generators to solar panels in Africa is a significant step towards mitigating climate change as generators are one of the major polluters, churning tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere.
Beyond their environmental effects, generators also have a long-term cost ineffectiveness compared to solar panels. How?
In this article, we will be taking a look at these two sources of energy and why we think solar panels have a cost-effective advantage over generators.
Generators consume a lot of fuel whether you run them daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly. Now, to the ordinary eye, the initial cost of buying a generator and the amount spent on fuel may seem insignificant if a yearly cost analysis was to be done in comparison with solar panels which cost almost an arm to purchase upfront.
But to the keen eye, solar panels have long-term cost-effectiveness because, apart from the initial purchasing amount, there isn’t anything else you would need to purchase for a long period because the average solar panel can last for years (and we’re talking about 25-30 years).
Another aspect that generators fall short in the cost-effectiveness department is the amount it takes to service generators and buy new parts.
If you’ve ever owned a generator, you would agree with that generators need servicing and some parts will get due for replacement in other to prolong their life.
Now, here’s the shocker. If you add the cost of servicing and replacing a generator’s parts to its initial purchase cost plus money spent on buying fuel, let’s say in the space of two years, you’d discover that you’d have spent way more than you would if you had just bought a solar panel, which costs nothing to run.
A good solar panel works autonomously and its solar regulator takes care of the battery which is maintenance-free.
Having considered the cost-effectiveness of solar panels, it would be important to note that it has an Achilles’ heel which is that it is heavily dependent on the weather and therefore, may not be as reliable as generators that can provide power continuously.
Solar panels output tends to drop when there’s less sunshine but asides from that, they’re a perfect energy source if you’re thinking long-term.