P.T. Barnum said there was a sucker born every minute. There would have to be to satisfy all the hustlers out there. And this was before the alternative fuels dodge. As the late Mr. Rogers might have put it. Can you spell S-O-L-Y-N-D-R-A?
A gaudy amount of money, most in the form of government subsidies, has been shoveled into solar power research since the first Arab oil embargo of the 1970s. The subsidies have enriched various folks nimble enough or connected enough to receive them. But they have produced very little in the way of power, and nothing that can compete with power generated by fossil fuels.
Solar power was way uneconomical when Nixon was president and the subsidies began. It remains so today. Because of physical limitations having to do with the huge area of solar panels required to produce any significant amount of power, and the fact that we insist on having things like night and clouds, solar is unlikely to ever be more than a niche energy source. And an unreliable one at that.