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Buying & Making Electricity

  • Buying Clean Electricity

    You have the option to purchase renewable electricity, either directly from your power supplier, from an independent clean power generator, or through renewable energy certificates.

  • Planning for a Small Renewable Energy System

    Planning for a home renewable energy system is a process that includes analyzing your existing electricity use, looking at local codes and requirements, deciding if you want to operate your system on or off of the electric grid, and understanding technology options you have for your site.

  • Grid-Connected Renewable Energy Systems

    When connecting a home energy system to the electric grid, you should research and consider what the typically required equipment will be as well as your power provider’s requirements and agreements.

  • Stand-Alone Renewable Energy Systems

    Powering your home or small business using a small renewable energy system that is not connected to the electricity grid -- called a stand-alone system -- can make economic and environmental sense.

You can use renewable energy to power your home, either by purchasing "green power"—electricity generated using renewable energy, or by installing a small renewable energy system. Using a small renewable energy system can help you lower your electricity costs, achieve energy independence, and reduce pollution. Learn your options for buying clean electricity, as well as how to plan for your own small wind, solar, or microhydropower systems.

Featured

Top 6 Things You Didn't Know About Solar Energy
Installing a concentrating solar power system in Gila Bend, Arizona. The curved  mirrors are tilted toward the sun, focusing sunlight on tubes that run the length of the mirrors. The reflected sunlight heats a fluid flowing through the tubes. The hot fluid then is used to boil water in a conventional steam-turbine generator to produce electricity. | Photo by Dennis Schroeder.

Counting down our list of top things you didn't know about solar energy -- read on for more on the most abundant energy resource known to mankind.

Soft Costs 101: The Key to Achieving Cheaper Solar Energy
Buying & Making Electricity

When buying a solar power system, hardware is not the only expense. There are also "soft costs": permits, financing, installation costs, and more. EERE's SunShot Initiative is working to address those, so that solar power can be even more cost-competitive.

Graduating to a Bright Tomorrow: Solar Ready Vets Class Graduates from Hill AFB
Deputy Secretary Liz Sherwood-Randall with the graduates of the Solar Ready Vets program at Hill Air Force Base, Utah. Image courtesy of the U.S. Air Force.

Deputy Secretary of Energy Liz Sherwood-Randall visited Hill Air Force Base in Utah recently to celebrate with 18 graduates of EERE's Solar Ready Vets program. This program helps transition military veterans into civilian careers in the solar industry, with promising results to date.

Solar Energy Jobs Outpace U.S. Economy
American solar power continued its rapid growth in 2015, adding new jobs 12 times faster than the rest of the economy, while saving customers tens of millions of dollars per year on energy bills. | Photo courtesy of O2emc.

American solar power continued its rapid growth in 2015, adding new jobs 12 times faster than the rest of the economy, while saving customers tens of millions of dollars per year on energy bills.