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Solar Farms Pros and Cons

Do you know what a solar farm is? Chances are you might not, but they’re popping up all over the …

Do you know what a solar farm is? Chances are you might not, but they’re popping up all over the place. Solar farms are basically large fields of solar panels that convert the sun’s energy into electrical energy. They have pros and cons just like anything else in life, so today we’re going to take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly of solar farms. Are they worth it? We’ll let you answer that for yourself. [1]

Solar farms pros and cons

Solar farms are a relatively new invention, and there is much debate about whether they are more advantageous or disadvantageous. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of solar farms to help make a decision.

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  • They take advantage of a reliable energy resource
  • Low maintenance
  • Zero emissions
  • See a return on your investment
  • Insurance against rising power prices
  • Quiet, simple, and safe
  • Diverse applications
  • Boost the local economy and create jobs
  • Reduce reliance on fossil fuels


  • Take a lot of space
  • Expensive
  • Solar waste
  • Seasonal output and sun dependence
  • Solar technology is still inefficient
  • Use of rare materials

Pro: They take advantage of a reliable and renewable energy source

Solar energy systems are a reliable resource because it is constantly being replenished by the sun. Unlike other sources of energy, such as fossil fuels, solar will never run out. This makes it a more sustainable option for powering our homes and businesses. Solar is also a very accessible form of energy, with panels becoming more and more affordable every day.

Solar energy is also very versatile. It can be used to power everything from small electronics to entire buildings. And, with advances in technology, solar panels are becoming more and more efficient at converting sunlight into electricity.

Pro: Solar panels are low maintenance

Solar panel systems have multiple advantages over traditional power plants in terms of maintenance. They’re easy to take care of and the initial investment is often the only big cost associated with solar panels. Additionally, they don’t require a lot of time to operate effectively.

worker next to sun and battery

Consequently, there are few operating costs associated with solar panels. Solar modules don’t degrade over time and continue to work for many years. The smallest moving parts can be accessed through photovoltaics, which is no cause for damage. After solar panels run their initial course, they still produce solar energy for two decades without any maintenance required.

The inverter is usually the only part that needs to be changed after 10-15 years (some are now lasting up to 25) because it continuously generates solar power into electricity[2] Apart from the inverter, the cables also need maintenance to ensure your solar power system runs smoothly and efficiently. In other words, once you pay for the initial solar system, you don’t have to worry about continued maintenance costs. Also, keep in mind that technology relating to solar power is rapidly improving and will continue to do so.

Pro: Zero emissions

Fossil power stations emit huge amounts of pollutant gases into the environment, including greenhouse gases. This increase in carbon dioxide is an important threat. Solar farms, however, produce very low emissions. It’s clean. There are no direct greenhouse gas emissions. They also do not produce radioactive wastes. Nevertheless, solar panels do carry a carbon footprint. The result is that CO2 is emitted when solar modules and their components are manufactured or used at the solar farm.

Pro: See a return on your investment with solar power

image showing return of investment with a hand holding money and 2 arrows pointing towards each other

Solar panels can save you money and help the environment by reducing energy consumption. Net metering is a process in which utility companies buy the excess power generated by your solar panels. Some states offer other performance-based incentive programs like solar renewable energy credits, which can result in thousands of dollars of savings depending on your location. All of the net metering benefits, as well as savings from reduced electricity bills, are used to repay the costs of installing the system. In areas where these incentive schemes exist, repayment for Solar panel installation usually takes about six years. [3]

Pro: Insurance against rising electricity prices

The cost of traditional forms of energy, like oil and coal, is on the rise. This has led to an increase in the cost of electricity, which is becoming increasingly difficult for people to afford. Solar farms are a good investment because they allow you to produce your energy, which can help offset the rising costs of electricity.

In addition to the financial benefits, solar farms also provide environmental benefits. They reduce our reliance on fossil fuels, which helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions and global warming. Solar panels also last for many years, so you can continue to reap the benefits long after you’ve paid off your initial investment.

Not only do solar farms help you save money on your electric bill, but they also provide a hedge against future price increases. As the cost of traditional forms of energy continues to rise, solar will become an even more attractive option.

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Solar energy is still considered one of the greenest sources of energy on Earth, though there are some drawbacks. The upfront costs for solar panels can be expensive, depending on the brand and quality. But oftentimes, these high initial costs will eventually be saved as you continue to use them.

Pro: Quiet, simple and safe

Solar farms are quiet compared to other sources of electricity generation. They don’t produce the noise of a coal-fired power plant or the flicker of a nuclear reactor. And while solar panels do produce some sound, it’s usually drowned out by the wind or birds singing.

rainbow colored with blue and green to signify the earth

Solar farms are much simpler than nuclear power plants. A solar farm has a few parts—solar panels, inverters, and a transformer—while a nuclear power plant has dozens of parts, including a reactor, turbines, and generators. Solar farms are also much safer than nuclear power plants. Solar farms have no moving parts, so they can’t explode like a nuclear reactor. And while solar panels can get hot in the sun, they don’t produce the kind of heat that can cause a meltdown.

Solar farms take a fraction of the staff that other power plant types require. For one, there is no fuel to purchase and store on-site. Fuel costs can make up a large portion of a plant’s operating budget, so by using solar energy there are big savings to be had. Additionally, maintenance on solar panels is simple and doesn’t require as many people as traditional plants do.

Pro: Diverse applications

Solar energy can be used in many ways beyond just generating electricity. For example, it can be used to heat water for homes and businesses. Solar thermal energy systems use the sun’s heat to warm water, which can then be used for things like heating pools and spas, washing clothes, and cooking food. In fact, according to the International Energy Agency, solar thermal technology is currently used in more than 250 million homes around the world.[4]

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Solar energy can also be used to cool buildings. Solar air conditioning systems use sunlight to heat a fluid that is then used to cool the building. And solar-powered refrigeration uses solar panels to generate electricity that powers a refrigerator or freezer.

Finally, solar energy can be used for transportation. There are several different types of solar-powered vehicles, including cars, boats, and airplanes. Solar-powered cars have been around since the 1970s[5], and there are now several different models available for purchase. Solar boats are becoming increasingly popular as well, and there are even solar-powered airplanes!

Pro: Boost the local economy and create jobs

Solar farms are a great way to boost the local economy and create jobs. Not only do they produce electricity with renewable energy, but they also require a lot of manpower to build and maintain. This means that solar farms can provide a lot of jobs for residents, such as a worker installing solar panels to produce power for the never-ending energy demand.

In addition, solar farms can help to revive local economies that have been struggling. By providing jobs and generating income, solar farms can help to improve the overall quality of life in the community. And when people have good jobs and a stable economy, they are more likely to invest in their community and its future.

Pro: Reduce reliance on fossil fuels

Solar farms are beneficial because they rely less on fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are a non-renewable energy source, so using solar energy instead helps to reduce our reliance on them. This is important because fossil fuels produce greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change and using solar energy instead helps to reduce our emissions of these gases.

industrial building with smog
hand in a circle

Solar is the future

Solar energy is a more reliable source of power than fossil fuels. Solar panels work even when the sun isn’t shining (cloudy days, for example), whereas fossil fuels like coal and natural gas can’t be relied on because they are inconsistent and can be affected by things like weather conditions. For example, if the climate becomes warmer, the efficiency of power production for many existing fossil fuels and nuclear power plants will reduce [6] This is because these plants utilize water for cooling; thus, the colder the water is, means more efficient the generators.

Solar farms are the future of energy, and they provide several benefits that make them an excellent choice for generating electricity. They’re quiet, safe, and simple to operate, and they also help to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.

Con: Take a lot of space

Solar farms take up a tremendous amount of space. For example, the California Valley Solar Ranch covers almost 2000 acres or 3.125 square miles[7] That’s about the size of 2,000 football fields! And while the solar panels at the ranch are spread out across that large area, many other solar farms are much, much bigger. The gigantic Topaz Solar Farm in California, for instance, takes up 6080 acres, or 9.5 square miles![8]

That’s a lot of land that could be used for something else. There’s been a lot of debate about whether or not solar farms are taking up too much space and whether or not they’re harming important ecosystems. Some people say that we should be using more land for solar farms, while others think we should be putting them on roofs and in other small spaces.

Solar farms can also take away land from animal habitats. For example, if a solar farm is built on land that was once used for grazing animals or farming, it could take away food and shelter from animals. This could cause the animals to move to other areas, which could disrupt the natural balance of the ecosystem.

Con: Expensive

Some believe that the high cost of solar energy, and solar installation, will eventually come down as the technology improves and becomes more widespread. Until then, though, solar farms remain a more expensive option than traditional forms of energy generation.

Solar farms are becoming increasingly popular, but one of the main reasons they haven’t taken off more is that they’re expensive. The equipment needed to create a solar farm, with all of the solar batteries, and solar panels, is costly, and the labor required to install them is also expensive.

money tag

Expensive solar energy storage

Solar farms are a great way to produce renewable energy, but the cost of storage can be prohibitive. While it is becoming less expensive to store solar energy as technology improves, traditional storage methods such as batteries or pumped hydro are still quite expensive. This limits the amount of solar energy that can be stored and used when needed.

Con: Solar waste

Solar energy is a great way to produce renewable energy, but there are some drawbacks to using solar farms. One of the main problems is that solar farms create a lot of waste. Solar panels contain materials that can be harmful to the environment if they’re not disposed of properly. In addition, the manufacturing process for solar panels creates pollutants that can harm air quality and ecosystems.

Pollution from solar panel factories is a big problem. The toxic chemicals used in the manufacturing process can release dangerous fumes into the air and contaminate water supplies. These pollutants can cause health problems in people and animals, and they can also kill plants and damage ecosystems.

Con: Seasonal output and sun dependence

Solar panels are a great way to produce renewable energy, but there are some drawbacks to using them. One of the main problems is that they don’t work very well in the snow. Solar panels rely on sunlight to generate electricity, and when it’s cloudy or snowy, they don’t produce as much power. Solar panels can stop working altogether when it’s snowing!

cloud with lighting underneath

Solar panels are less effective in winter because there are fewer daylight hours and also because of the cold weather conditions. The solar panel system will not be able to generate solar power from the sun as well as if it was a warm day. If you have an installation that is facing south, then you may want to reconsider your decision if you live in a colder climate area and get less sunlight during winter months.

Con: Solar technology is still inefficient

Though solar technology has improved by leaps and bounds in recent years, it is still not as efficient as many people would like. The vast majority of solar energy collected by panels is wasted, due to a variety of factors.

Solar panel placement is very important

First, the angle at which the sun hits a panel can greatly affect its efficiency. If the panel isn’t angled correctly, it won’t collect as much energy as it could. Second, even when a panel is angled correctly, weather conditions can greatly reduce its efficiency. Cloudy days or inclement weather can block sunlight from hitting the panel and converting it into energy. Finally, solar panels are not very efficient when used to power devices that need a lot of power quickly (like an air conditioner). They work best when powering devices that use small amounts of power over time (like a light bulb).


Con: Use of rare materials

Rare resources are needed to manufacture solar panels, and this is bad for several reasons. First, it takes rare resources to make solar panels, and these resources are in short supply. This means that solar panel manufacturers are competing with other industries for a limited amount of resources. Second, the extraction of rare resources is often environmentally damaging. For example, mining materials used in solar panels can pollute waterways and damage ecosystems. Finally, using rare resources to make solar panels drives up the cost of renewable energy. This makes it harder for people to switch to solar power and increases our dependence on fossil fuels.

Solar panels are made of a variety of materials, but two of the most common are cadmium telluride and crystalline silicon. [10]

These materials are popular because they are very efficient at converting sunlight into electricity. However, cadmium telluride is very rare, and this has led to some problems.

The extraction of these materials is often environmentally damaging. For example, mining materials used in solar panels can pollute waterways and damage ecosystems. Second, using rare resources to make solar panels drives up the cost of renewable energy. This makes it harder for people to switch to solar power and increases our dependence on fossil fuels.

To learn more about the carbon footprint of solar panel manufacturing, click here.

Do solar farms affect property values?

magnifying glass with a house in the center

There is no definitive answer to whether or not living near a solar farm affects property values. Some studies have shown that there is little to no impact, while others suggest that there may be a slight decrease in value. However, it is important to note that this largely depends on the location of the solar farm, as well as the individual home and its surrounding neighborhood. For example, if a solar farm is located in a rural area with few homes nearby, it will likely have little to no impact on property values. However, if a solar farm is built near a densely populated area, it may cause home values to decline slightly. Ultimately, it is up to the individual homebuyer to decide whether or not living near a solar farm is right for them.

Bottom line

Solar farms are becoming an increasingly popular way to produce renewable energy, but they also come with some drawbacks. Weighing the pros and cons of solar farms can be tricky, but in the end, the benefits far outweigh any potential negatives. Here’s a look at some of the biggest pros and cons of solar farms:

the huge benefit of solar farms is that they produce clean, renewable energy. Unlike other forms of power generation, such as coal or natural gas plants, solar farms don’t emit any harmful emissions that can contribute to climate change. In addition, by reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, solar farms can help combat air pollution and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

On the other hand, there are some drawbacks to solar farms. For one, they can be expensive to build. In addition, the land required to build a solar farm is typically limited and may conflict with other land uses, such as farming or residential development.

Despite these drawbacks, the pros of solar farms outweigh the cons. By producing clean, affordable solar energy production and reducing our reliance on fossil fuels, solar farms are a crucial part of the transition to a greener future.


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I'm a clean energy enthusiast, and I am always looking for ways to reduce my carbon footprint, and this blog is my way of sharing what I have learned with you. I love to use a methodical approach to finding different methods that we can use to reduce our carbon footprint and help to save the planet.

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