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What do you call a solar spill? A nice day.



(Mister Energy’s niece poses a few questions, curious how solar energy compares to other energy sources — and, in particular, whether there exist innate hazards in utilizing it, just as for oil, coal, and nuclear power…)

  • “So, are there any dangers from using the sun for power? Or, like, big accidents that can happen and then take years to clean up — I mean something like that ship, the… um, Exxon… the Exxon Valdez?”
  • Hmm… You know what a solar spill is — what’s another name for it?
    A nice day!
    [In the manner of a reporter on-scene:]
    Yes, we’re having a solar spill today, Saturday, September 6; it’s definitely a bad solar spill.
    (…And as a result, I’m going to get quite a nice suntan!)
    As you can see, the ocean is sparkling and beautiful, and the sky is a dazzling, bright blue… yeah, I’d say this solar spill is probably a Class 10!
  • “Well, then, is it just not as powerful? What can you use solar energy for — I mean, besides stuff like how you don’t get electric bills anymore, because of those panels on your house?”
  • It can be used for everything. Even the wind that’s blowing today comes from solar energy,
    It’s just unevenly distributed solar energy, which forms wind.
    So that sailboat out there on the horizon is actually using solar energy, just in another form.
    Just like the food that we eat was originally solar energy, before chlorophyll did its magic.
  • “But, wait — so, what can’t it be used for then? Or can everything — does everything — come from the sun?”
  • Yup, everything does, one way or another.
    Solar’s the answer to every energy question — it’s just a matter of form and substance.