According to Wikipedia, renewable energy is energy that is collected from resources that can be renewed, which are naturally replenished on a human timescale, such as sunlight, wind, rain, waves, and geothermal heat. Four important areas are provided with energy, they are electricity generation, air and water heating/cooling, transportation, and rural energy services. Renewable energy is often referred to as clean energy as it comes from natural sources or processes that are constantly replenished. Renewable energy is also known as alternative energy as the energies used are non-traditional ones and have a low environmental impact. There are many forms of renewable energies and mostly depends on each other to be used for consumption.
But do we know what are renewable energies and how helpful it is to our environment? To answer all these questions, here is our take on the alternative energies and where it is beneficial to use.
- Solar – this energy can be converted and collected in different ways. Solar energy is the direct conversion of sunlight using panels or collectors. Be it either solar water heating with solar collectors or attic cooling with solar attic fan for domestic use, we are trying everything to make renewable energy become a success. Photovoltaic systems use solar cells to convert sunlight into electricity. More solar energy reaches the earth each minute than is consumed in fossil fuels in an entire year. Solar energy can be divided into two major categories – solar thermal and solar voltaic.
- Wind – A renewable energy we interact with every day, the wind is used to run wind turbines that range from around 600KW to 9MW of rated power. Wind energy is the cheapest energy source in many parts of the country. Wind is one of the cleanest and most sustainable ways to generate electricity as it produces no toxic pollution or global warming emissions.
- Geothermal – Hydrothermal plants are the most widely developed type of geothermal power plant that is located where hot molten rock is close to the earth’s crust and produces hot water. Geothermal systems involve drilling into the earth’s surface to reach deeper in order to allow access to geothermal energy. There are different environmental impacts depending on the conversion and cooling technology used.
- Biomass – This is a renewable organic matter and can include biological material derived from living or recently alive organism, such as wood, waste, and alcohol fuels. When biomass is burned, the chemical energy is released as heat can generate electricity with a steam turbine. Biomass is often mistaken as clean and renewable fuel and a greener alternative to coal and other fossil fuels for producing electricity.
- Ocean – Still in the developmental phase, tidal and wave energy are ruled by the moon’s gravity which harnesses its power. Some tidal energies, such as tidal barrages, may harm wildlife and can be found in dams and ocean bay or lagoon. Tidal power relies on dam-like structures or ocean floor anchored to devices on or below the surface of the water.
Using more renewable energy can ease the transition toward a clean energy future.