Sunlight travels to the earth in approximately 8 minutes from 93,000,000 miles away, at 186,282 miles per second.
The sun is also the main source of nonrenewable fossil fuels (coal, gas and petroleum), which began life as plants or animals whose energy came from the sun millions of year ago.
Solar energy is responsible for weather patterns and ocean currents.
Clouds, pollution and wind can prevent the sun's rays from reaching the earth.
Other Interesting Facts about Solar Energy
Da Vinci predicted a solar industrialization as far back as 1447.
In one hour more sunlight falls on the earth than what is used by the entire population in one year.
A world record was set in 1990 when a solar powered aircraft flew 4060km across the USA, using no fuel.
Fierce weather cost the world a record $130 Billion in the first eleven months of 1998- more money than was lost from weather related disasters from 1980 to 1990 ($82 Billion).
Researchers from the Worldwatch Institute and Munich Re blame deforestation and climate change from Earth warming for much of the loss. The previous one-year record was $90 Billion in 1996. Source - Associated Press, November 28,1998.
About 2 billion people in the world are currently without electricity.
Accounting for only 5 percent of the world's population, Americans consume 26 percent of the world's energy.
Electric ovens consume the most amount of electricity followed by microwaves and central air conditioning.
Third world countries with an abundance of sunlight and a population currently without electricity, represents the fastest growing market for solar energy, with the largest domestic market being the utilities sector.
Shell Oil predicts that 50% of the world's energy will come from renewable sources by 2040.