Renewable energy?! What’s the catch?
Renewable energy (sources) or RES capture their energy from existing flows of energy, from on-going natural processes. Such as sunshine, wind, flowing water, biological processes, and geothermal heat flows.
The most common definition is that renewable energy is from an energy resource that is replaced rapidly by a natural process such as power generated from the sun or from the wind.
Most renewable forms of energy, other than geothermal and tidal power, ultimately come from the Sun. This is the future, the path we should go. Unremarkable source of goods.
This form of energy relies on the nuclear fusion power from the core of the Sun. This energy can be collected and converted in a few different ways.
Solar energy is that produced by the Sun’s light – photovoltaic energy – and its warmth – solar thermal – for the generation of electricity or the production of heat. Inexhaustible and renewable, since it comes from the Sun, solar energy is harnessed using panels and mirrors.
Solar energy offers many benefits that make it one of the most promising energy forms. Renewable, non-polluting and available planet-wide, it contributes to sustainable development and job creation where it is installed.
Summary of the benefits of solar energy
- Avoids global warming
- Reduces use of fossil fuels
- Reduces energy imports
- Generates local wealth and jobs
- Contributes to sustainable development
- It is modular and very versatile, adaptable to different situations
- Can be applied alike for large-scale electricity generation and on a small scale in areas isolated from the network
The future is green energy, sustainability, renewable energy.
The wind is a clean, free, and readily available renewable energy source. Each day, around the world, wind turbines are capturing the wind’s power and converting it to electricity. This source of power generation plays an increasingly important role in the way we power our world.
Wind energy is plentiful, readily available, and capturing its power does not deplete our valuable natural resources. In fact, wind turbines can help to counter the detrimental effects of climate change.
The Global Wind Energy Outlook projects that by 2030 wind energy will offset 2.5 billion tons per year of carbon dioxide. This is equivalent to taking 530 million cars off the road each year or avoiding the use of 4.6 billion barrels of oil globally. This would even offset emissions from 525 coal-fired power plants in one year. Think about it.
This form uses the gravitational potential of elevated water that was lifted from the oceans by sunlight. It is not strictly speaking renewable since all reservoirs eventually fill up and require very expensive excavation to become useful again. At this time, most of the available locations for hydroelectric dams are already used in the developed world.
Is the term for energy from plants. Energy in this form is very commonly used throughout the world. Unfortunately the most popular is the burning of trees for cooking and warmth. This process releases copious amounts of carbon dioxide gases into the atmosphere and is a major contributor to unhealthy air in many areas. Some of the more modern forms of biomass energy are methane generation and production of alcohol for automobile fuel and fueling electric power plants.
Examples of biomass and their uses for energy:
- wood and wood processing wastes—burned to heat buildings, to produce process heat in industry, and to generate electricity
- agricultural crops and waste materials—burned as a fuel or converted to liquid biofuels
- food, yard, and wood waste in garbage—burned to generate electricity in power plants or converted to biogas in landfills
- animal manure and human sewage—converted to biogas, which can be burned as a fuel
Can a country achieve 100% use of renewable energy?
If you think 100% renewable energy will never happen, think again. Several countries have adopted ambitious plan to obtain their power from renewable energy. These countries are not only accelerating RE installations but are also integrating RE into their existing infrastructure to reach a 100% RE mix.
In a recent study known as The Solutions Project Stanford professor Mark Jacobson, has concluded that U.S can meet its 100% of energy demand through renewable by 2050 through concentrated solar power, utility-scale and rooftop PV, onshore and offshore wind, tidal and conventional hydropower and geothermal wave. Study stays to achieve its goal, conscious efforts should be made to obtain all new electricity generation by sunlight. Water and wind by 2020 and U.S should replace 80% of its existing energy to renewable sources by 2030 to reach 100% renewable by 2050.
The resource mix of renewable would be different state by state, in California, Texas and Massachusetts it would be as follows