renewable energy is a new concept to some people but in actuality it has been around and talked about for many years. What it is is energy that comes from a source that is not depleted when used, and can be replenished. Some of these sources are wind, rain and sunlight. Renewable energy can replace the common standard fuels humans use in the generation of electricity, hot water and heating, and motor fuels (“How solar energy Works,” 2009).
These energy resources can exist over huge areas unlike other sources which are usually concentrated in a small number of countries. The implementation of renewable energy is shown to be having positive results such as energy security, slowing down climate change, and providing economic benefits (Ryan & Campbell, 2012).
According to a poll conducted in Toronto by Oraclepoll Research Limited and commissioned by the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association (2011), over seven out of ten Ontarians support green energy initiatives. Initiatives like using renewable energy such as wind power, hydropower, and solar energy. DISCUSSION
First off is the renewable energy source of wind power. wind power is the conversation of wind energy into a form of energy that humans can use. Some examples of the forms of energy we use is the electrical power produced through wind turbines and the mechanical power produced by windmills. Examples of simpler forms are wind pumps that are used for draining and pumping of water, and also the wind caught by sails to push ships. Now people are using wind farms which are filled with hundreds of wind turbines that connect to an electric power transmission network. Research published by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (2011) found that this onshore wind is a cheap source of electricity, even cheaper than fossil fuel plants. Senior Research Scientist, and Founder of the Center for Life Cycle Analysis at Columbia University, Vasilis Fthenakis, stated that ‘As an alternative to fossil fuels, wind power is renewable, plentiful and clean; uses little land and produces no greenhouse gases (2008).
... there is strong support for promoting renewable sources such as solar power and wind power. While many renewable energy projects are large-scale, renewable technologies are also suited to ... geothermal heat. Renewable energy replaces conventional fuels in four distinct areas: electricity generation, hot water/space heating, motor fuels, and rural (off-grid) energy services. Renewable energy resources ...
He goes on to say that they effects on the environment caused from creating wind farms are easier to solve than those from creating other power sources. Also, other parts of the world are shown to have fully adopted this renewable energy. In the 2011 Renewables Global Status Report, it was recorded that Denmark was generating more than a quarter of its electricity from wind, and 83 countries around the world were using wind power to supply their electricity. A year later The Global Wind Energy Council’s market statistics showed that wind energy production accounted for over 2.5% of total worldwide electricity usage (2011).
Using wind power as a renewable energy source is gradually becoming a main stream practice. Hydropower
Another renewable energy source that has been around for years is hydropower. Hydropower, also known as water power, comes from the energy of falling and running water, which can be harnessed for useful purposes (“Energy Source: Hydropower,” n.d., para. 1).
The use of hydropower goes back to ancient times when it was sued for irrigation and the operation of watermills, sawmills, and textile mills (Gatte &Kadhim, n.d., p. 96, para.2).
Because water is eight-hundred times denser than air, this means that even a slow flowing stream can still produce a large amount of energy (“Types of Power,” 2014, para.6).
Power of Wind There is a large sector in the United States that believes wind energy is an excellent alternative resource. There is also a group of people that believe that the wind turbines that are used to generate wind energy is a bad idea because they obstruct the natural view, causes death to birds, and generates noise pollution. They also argue that wind energy is not a dependable source of ...
There are many forms of water energy. One is hydroelectric energy which refers to the energy collected at large hydroelectric dams, the largest of which is Three Gorges Dam in China. Another type is micro hydro systems which are hydroelectric power installations that produce up to one hundred kilowatts of power.
Lastly are ‘run-of-the-river’ hydroelectricity systems that collect energy from rivers and oceans without having to create a large reservoir. Today, hydropower is produced in over a hundred and fifty countries, with Asia generating thirty-two percent of global hydropower in 2010 (World Watch Institute, 2013, para.4).
China is the largest hydroelectricity produced with seven-hundred and twenty-one terawatt-hours of production in 2010 (Tiwari, 2014, p.3).
In the future we could see two new forms of hydropower such as wave power that would capture the energy of the oceans waves, and also tidal power, which would convert the energy of tides. Solar energy
Lastly, we have the renewable resource of solar energy. Solar energy is known as the most plentiful and cleanest renewable energy source available (CanSIA, 2011, para.1).
Today’s technology allows people to capture this energy in a variety of ways which gives the public ways to use the suns light and heat. Solar technologies are either categorized as passive solar or active solar, depending on the way they capture, convert, and distribute energy. Systems that are active solar use devices that convert the sun’s heat or light to another form of energy people can use. Passive solar deals with special design, or building materials that use the sun’s position to provide direct heating or lighting. When it comes to harnessing the sun’s solar energy there are two common types of technology being used.
One way is using solar photovoltaic’s, or PV, which concert light to electricity. Another way is through solar thermal which is heating nd cooling water and air. Solar photovoltaics are used for grid-connected electricity to operate appliances, and lighting and air conditioning for all kinds of buildings. In a 2013 analysis by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, they state that, “Solar PV has turned into a multi-billion industry, continues to improve its cost-effectiveness, and has the most potential of any renewable technology” (Lopez, Roberts, Heimiller, Blair and Porro, 2012).
The discovery of nuclear power had brought mankind to one of its greatest success throughout history. Nuclear technology is considered as a “gift” from the Italian-American physicist, Enrico Fermi, who was given the title as the “new Promethean”, similar to the ancient Greek mythological figure. Extending this analogy, it was the Prometheans who gave the entire human race a type of fire within the ...
It’s suggested that in the future everyday objects such as clothing, the rooftops of cars and even roads themselves turned into power-generating solar collectors. CONCLUSION
Based on Renewable Energy Network’s 2014 global status report, renewable contributed nineteen percent to energy consumption and twenty-two percent to electricity generation in 2012 and 2013. Worldwide investments in renewable technologies amounted to more than two-hundred and fourteen billion in 2013, with countries like China and the United States investing heavily in wind, hydro and solar energy (Indo Renergy Expo, 2014, para. 2).
At least 30 nations around the world already have renewable energy contributing more than twenty percent of energy supply. National renewable energy markets are expected to continue to grow in the coming decade (REN21, 2014).This shows that renewable energy like wind power, hydropower, and solar energy are only going to continue to become more popular and be widely used throughout the world.