As the world teeters on the brink of a global energy crisis, it is imperative that we seek out alternative energy solutions to reduce our dependency on non-renewable sources. Renewable energy utilizes natural resources. Since they are naturally replenished, they can never be depleted. The most common types of renewable energy sources are solar, hydro, and wind.
The Solar Solution: The sun’s energy is the most abundant, free energy available. Harnessing the power of the sun to provide thermal energy for solar space heating, solar water heating and solar pool heating produces clean, affordable energy and reduces energy costs. The sun has always been a source of heat energy and light energy. With the advancement of technology, the sun’s energy can be utilized to produce affordable electricity. This is accomplished by means of photovoltaic systems. Photovoltaic technology makes use of the sun’s energy to produce usable electricity.
The Hydro Solution: Hydro or water energy is an effective and abundant renewable energy solution. Hydroelectric is the process of converting the power of water into electricity. Water behind a dam is channeled through an intake where it pushes the blades of a turbine. The turbine spins a generator that produces electricity. Hydroelectric power accounts for over 10% of all the electricity produced in the United States.
The Wind Solution: Utilizing the power of the wind is centuries old. The history of the windmill can be traced back to the 7th Century Persians. Ancient mariners used the wind to power their sailing vessels; the Dutch used windmills to pump water from low-lying areas, and farmers worldwide have been using windmills to pump water from wells. The late 19th Century ushered in the era of wind generated electricity. A myriad of wind turbines are in operation today, ranging from affordable, small-scale residential systems to large-scale wind farms that supply electricity to utility customers.
Wind and solar solutions are the most promising. Not many people can build a hydroelectric dam on their property, but just about everybody can implement some type of wind or solar technology. There are a host of inexpensive, do-it-yourself guides, and manuals that provide a blueprint for building wind and solar powered systems for home use. These systems can substantially reduce your electric bill or even generate enough surplus power that you can sell back to your power company for a profit.
Once available to only the wealthy, these renewable energy solutions are now affordable for anybody who desires them. Not only will they reduce power bills, they also contribute to a more energy independent world. Lets do our part for our future generations. They will thank us for it.