Solar energy helps the environment by not creating energy in a way that is harmful to the environment, in contrast to non-renewable energy which does. It is not just because solar energy is renewable though, but because it does not emit polluting gas into the atmosphere. Then there are also the greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide, which add to global warming that are also released by fossil fuels.
There are two ways that solar energy helps the environment, in one way by being renewable so that it is not depleting the planets resources. Secondly, because it creates electricity in a way that is clean and does not release any pollutants or greenhouse gases.
Solar energy is renewable. That is, the energy created is not made by something which is going to run out any time soon. As long as the Earth and the Sun are around and sustaining life on the planet, solar energy will be available. Conversely, fossil fuels are a finite resource, so every time they are used to make energy, there is a little less of it to use in the future. In this sense, it is harming the environment to use fossil fuels in that it actively depletes the planet’s resources. Solar energy does not use any resources, after the solar planels have been constructed, so it helps the environment in this way.
Usually when people ask, “how does solar energy help the environment?” the main answer that is given is that it does not create any pollution. This is of course true, there are no fumes created so solar energy is an entirely clean form of energy. In fact though, it is even better than that. Not only does solar energy not hurt the environment, but by being a clean form of energy it indirectly helps the environment actively as well. It does so because all of the energy that is created with solar cells, that is energy that does not have to be created with fossil fuels. This means that all of the carbon dioxide and pollutants which would have been released by the burning of non-renewable energy sources will not be when the energy is created with solar panels.
One of the greatest potential threats to the environment is of course global warming. If all of the worst predictions to do with climate change come true then there will be very serious problems all over the planet. It is therefore important that we stop pumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels, and that means expanding the use of renewable energy. Solar energy is one of the most accessible and viable ways of doing this, and allows everyone to get involved by having solar panels installed on their roof.
These are the major ways in which solar energy helps the environment, both from being a clean energy itself and allowing a reduction in non-renewable energy being burned.