Harness the Sun: Bringing Renewable Energy Home

Trends / Sustainability
Gabrielle Pedro Fredrick
Nov 2, 2021
It’s been hot in Los Angeles.

That feels like an obvious statement, like “water is wet.” But as California closes the books on its hottest summer on record1, it’s hard not to think about the latest UN Climate Report2 released in August,  which anticipate more extreme temperatures in the coming years. We’ve already discussed the evils of plastic3, and our new wave of Visual GPS4 research shows that over a quarter of Americans have stopped using single‑use plastics such as bottles, coffee pods, or plastic bags.

It’s promising to think that the climate crisis is somewhere on our minds, as Visual GPS reveals that 90% of Americans practice some form of sustainability for the good of the planet. More than half of Americans are committed to taking steps to reducing their carbon footprint5 every day but recycling still reigns supreme as the favorite way to help the planet. 
We may be familiar with some ways of making our homes more environmentally friendly, from simple things such as turning off lights6 before we leave a room or opening a window for a cross breeze instead of turning on the air conditioning. Thanks to innovations in technology, it’s been easier than ever to adopt energy efficient and sustainable practices, like switching to LED light bulbs to using high efficiency appliances7 such as washer and dryers.

Something that’s becoming more accessible to general consumers is harnessing the power of our own earth. Visual GPS has revealed that over half of Americans are already utilizing renewable energy sources, be it solar, wind, or natural gas. Not only is renewable energy good for the planet, but it’s good on consumer wallets8, thanks to tax incentives and government credits. Renewable energy is something consumers like to see as well ‑ image searches for renewable energy have increased 76% in the past year, and searches for clean energy have gone up 96%. There’s an additional benefit to solar energy – it's great for companies9 as well.
Featuring a home that utilizes solar energy in imagery (be it the foreground or background), is sure to benefit consumer perception. According to Visual GPS, over half of Americans only buy from brands that make an effort to be eco‑friendly, and the incorporation of renewable energy in imagery is a good way to demonstrate a brand’s conscious commitment to the environment. Not only that, but it can help consumers to make more ecologically friendly decisions. If just one resident installs solar panels in their home, it could influence others10 to do the same.

The utilization of solar power isn’t fading anytime soon and neither is a desire to see it. Visual searches for solar energy have gone up 55% in the past year. The use of solar power has steadily increased11 in the past twenty years, and that use is projected to triple12 over the next ten years. As of 2019, almost half of Americans13 have already considered the use of solar panels in their homes. We can only hope that as we start to visualize homes outfitted for renewable energy, that the future of the climate crisis could also be as bright at the sun itself.
Generation Green: Baby Boomers and Gen X