Rooftops can provide more than shelter from the elements; they may also provide a goldmine of untapped energy production.
The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) recently issued a report stating that rooftop solar panels have the potential to power nearly 40 percent of the U.S.
“It is important to note that this report only estimates the potential from existing, suitable rooftops, and does not consider the immense potential of ground-mounted PV,” co-author of the report Robert Margolis said. “Actual generation from PV in urban areas could exceed these estimates by installing systems on less suitable roof space, by mounting PV on canopies over open spaces such as parking lots, or by integrating PV into building facades. Further, the results are sensitive to assumptions about module performance, which are expected to continue to improve over time.”
Essentially, solar panels could have limitless possibles. However, land is a precious commodity. Roofs, however, provide a space that typically goes unused to generate a huge amount of power for the U.S.