Many Types Of Alternative Energy

Fossil fuels are coal, oil, and gas. They may be the major energy resource currently used, but they are not the only options available. And they are certainly not the safest for the environment. Burning fossil fuels produces carbon dioxide. This enhances the greenhouse effect, thereby warming the environment. Also, burning coals to produce electricity releases sulfur dioxide into the air and this contributes to the formation of acid rain.

There are, indeed, many other sources of energy available for our use. Some of them are even renewable. This means that their supply will always be replenished. Aside from this fact, another good thing about renewable energy resources is that they leave little imprint on the environment. Some examples of these are hydroelectric power, tidal energy, wave power, and wind energy.

Hydroelectric power makes use of the energy of flowing water to generate electricity. The pressure and force of running water turns turbines to generate electricity then the water flows downstream in its normal state. The sun evaporates water from the seas and rivers. After which, the clouds release them back to the earth, and the dams, as rain. Around 20% of the world’s electricity is supplied using hydroelectric power. The plants are very expensive to build, but once it has been set up, energy is virtually free.

Tidal energy makes use of the tide’s power to generate electricity. Tidal barrages are structures used to convert tidal power to electricity. They can only do so when tides are moving in and out. And generally, this is only 10 hours a day. Therefore, other sources of energy must be used to provide electricity for the rest of the hours. They are also very expensive to build. Many researches are being done to make the use of tidal energy more feasible because it has a lot of potential, especially since tides are predictable.

Wave power can also be used to produce electricity because waves are a strong source of energy. The difficulty, however, is in harnessing this energy to convert into electricity. Also, unless the weather is consistently stormy, waves cannot always be depended on. The power station must be able to withstand extreme weather conditions since it is in this condition when wave power is most available.

Wind energy uses the wind’s power to generate electricity. Windmills or wind turbines are used to directly convert wind power to electricity. The use of wind power is an ancient practice that is starting to become common again. Because of environmental and monetary concerns, many homes and communities are now making use of windmills to generate electricity.

The important conditions for using windmills are a location with a large enough open space to install it and a strong enough wind in that area. Wind energy can be used to provide electricity for a territory as big as a city or as small as a single home. Due to modern technology, wind turbines are now very cost-effective and already produce electricity cheaper than fossil fuels.

Because of concern for the environment and for survival, people are now looking deeply into other ways of producing electricity. Fossil fuels harm the environment too much and cannot even supply us with endless energy. Many of the alternative energy sources are still in need of further studies and development in order to be more viable. However, people have finally realized that we cannot afford to destroy our earth beyond repair. So, they have taken on this challenge.