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Published on September 17th, 2011 | by Zachary Shahan


Combining Solar Power and Your Electric Vehicle — Too Practical to Pass Up (Reader Comment)

September 17th, 2011 by  


We recently got the following reader comment on a post of Andrew’s on electric vehicles, the smart grid, and residential solar power. It’s a great one, so I thought I’d highlight it further with a quick repost here. Check it out:

May I please emphasize this?

“A small, 1.2-kilowatt solar system priced at around $4,000 will cover charging costs for an electric vehicle for up to 40 years.”

For $4,000 you can buy your ‘gas’ for the next 40 years.

For the next forty years you will be producing the power for your EV for $8.33 a month. Those are fixed dollars, not dollars that will rise with inflation, the $8.33 per month is locked in.

The $185 per month that ICEV owners will be paying for gas? In forty years, based on past inflation, will cost you $1,027.

Let’s use historical inflation rates to look forward to forty years from now…

Price for gas now = $185.
Price for electricity now = $8.33.

Price for gas forty years from now $1,027.
Price for electricity forty years from now $8.33.

Forty years from now $8.33 will have the buying power of $1.44 in today’s dollars. For less than the price of a latte, you charge your EV for a month.

On an annual basis, $12,324 for gas, $100 for electricity.

What’s not to love about that?

(Yes, curmudgeons, there may be some inverter repair necessary along the way, and a tree might need to be trimmed back. Thank you in advance for grousing.)

Image Credit: SunPower 


About the Author

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself (and other species). He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director and chief editor. He's also the president of Important Media and the director/founder of EV Obsession and Solar Love. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, and Canada. Zach has long-term investments in TSLA, FSLR, SPWR, SEDG, & ABB — after years of covering solar and EVs, he simply has a lot of faith in these particular companies and feels like they are good cleantech companies to invest in. But he offers no professional investment advice and would rather not be responsible for you losing money, so don't jump to conclusions.

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