Solar Energy is a form of ‘Distributed Generation.’ Distributed generation refers to the small-scale production of electricity on a local level, rather than large-scale industrial power plants. This is factor of vital importance because centralized energy production creates situations where power companies are able to control the price of electricity and where the multitude of the masses are dependent on one source controlled by one company for electricity. Just as small-scale food production on a local level reduces our collective dependency on large-scale agriculture and the multinational conglomerations, so does solar reduce our dependency on coal and nuclear energy. Distributed generation also implies a higher level of energy security and local resiliency, as well as a lower impact on the environment. In addition, “efficiency gains no longer come from increasing generating capacity, but from smaller units located closer to sites of demand.” (Takahashi, et al; Policy Options to Support Distributed Resources; U. of Del., Ctr. for Energy & Env. Policy; 2005) In other words, it is also more efficient to have a distributed generation grid rather than large centralized plants.
This also points towards the distributed generation of aquaponics food production as a localized and decentralized source of local and healthy food for the future. Just as solar energy can reverse the model of large centralized power plants charging exorbitant rates for dirty energy, so can aquaponics bring forward a new model of drought tolerant, small-scale, localized and autonomous food production.