Carbon based pollution will be tremendously reduced when cars that are powered by the sun become widely available. But, there are other devices that work well on solar energy. Solar powered generators can be purchased, and are a great source of energy in emergencies.
Maximize the output of your solar panels by adjusting them seasonally. Adjusting your panels twice a year, once in the summer and once in the winter, will ensure that your panels are producing the maximum amount of energy by taking into account the earth's changing position relative to the sun.
Keep your solar panels out of the shade. It might seem obvious, but your solar panels do need sun. Make sure that you are not installing them in the shade. Trim back the branches on surrounding trees if you need to. Failing to do so could cost you more than half your energy output.
How to make a solar cell easily (the most simple way still affordable a general family). The technology is there for you.