In short form, renewable energy is a type of secondary energy that can be used without depleting or significantly diminishing the amount available to us on earth. There are several different types of renewable energy including solar, wind, geothermal and hydropower. Fossil fuels such as oil, coal and natural gas are non-renewable sources of fuel that causes massive amounts of damage to our environment that will present for years to come. Renewable energy is a crucial component to a more sustainable future and it’s beneficial to everyone.
What Is Renewable Energy & What Can It Do For Me?
There are many different types of renewable energies that can be used for fuel, heating and cooling, electricity generation and promoting transport efficiency. In general, renewable energy sources include wind power, hydropower, marine energy (ocean energy). We’ll go over the many ways that you can adopt more environmentally friendly forms of energy and what beneficial effect they will have on the world’s environment.
What Is Renewable Energy – Wood
Wood is obviously a source of renewable energy, theoretically an infinite source of energy! Trees absorb carbon dioxide and grow back. All we need to do is, simply plant as many or more trees as we harvest. Wood has been used as fuel since humans discovered fire and could be used to heat homes and businesses.
Uses – Heating
More and more people are becoming conscious of what they use to power their home’s heating. Now we are not talking about putting a few logs on the fire and huddling around! Of course not, but we are talking about wood pellet boilers.
What are wood pellet boilers? We spoke to Mark a heating engineer from PlumbGuardian for the inside scoop on wood pellet boilers. ”Wood pellet boilers use wood pellets harvested from sustainably grown trees. Burning wood pellets to heat your home can also prove to be cost-effective as you would only use what you need! Another bonus of wood pellet boilers is that if you aren’t connected to the gas grid this will provide you with more than enough heat for your home!”
To expand on the above paragraph, if you have a wood-burning stove in your home or perhaps one of those old fireplaces that you can no longer fit a nice big log burner in. The chances are these stoves and fireplaces will take up valuable floor space. What you need is a lean and mean wood pellet boiler.
Uses – Furniture, Clothing
Different types of trees offer unique properties and potential environmentally alternatives to common household products. Obviously, we have wooden furniture but trees can provide twine and fabrics for clothing.
What Is Renewable Energy – Solar
Now I don’t know if you know this but we are bathed morning, noon and night in energy. This energy comes from the big bright ball in the sky called the sun! What you need is a solar panel to harness this energy and use it to help power your home. But don’t worry if you can’t afford to install solar panels, more and more major energy companies are using solar as one of their sources of renewable energy such as IOGEN and Bullfrog Power. With vast solar farms installed in the deserts of America.
Uses – Heating, Power
Solar power can be used in numerous ways but we’ll cover a couple of examples here. Solar power can be used to heat your homes hot water supply. The suns heat is absorbed by the solar panel, then conducted into a fluid that is pumped through your hot water tank. Leaving you with piping hot water, ready to be used for bathing, washing etc. The obvious example is solar power being used to power our homes. A solar panel, placed on your roof can be used to generate electricity for the home all year round! Weather permitting of course.
What Is Renewable Energy – Wind
The answer my friend is blowing in the wind. Wind power is another potentially endless supply of energy. The principles behind wind turbines are the same as that of a turbine on any jet. When wind flows through the blades it causes them to turn, which in turn rotates an axle with magnets attached to it. As these magnets are rotating they create electricity!
Uses – Battery Charging, Industrial Uses
Wind power is perfect for those who have large electrical equipment such as electric lawnmowers and bike/scooter batteries. Another use of wind power is that farming is using traditional turbines to pump water and mill grains to this very day!
What Is Renewable Energy – Hydro
Wave energy is also referred to as tidal power. The main difference between wave and tidal power is that the latter refers only to the high tides caused by the gravity of the Moon and Sun. Tidal power can be converted into electricity through various methods including turbines, dams and barrages.
Uses – Electricity Generation, Industrial Uses
Hydroelectricity can provide the world with vast amounts of energy with the copious amounts of rivers and streams that we can utilize!
What Is Renewable Energy – Geothermal
Geothermal energy is the result of heat from within the Earth, in addition to sunlight and rain. The main sources of geothermal energy come from magma in the Earth’s crust that interacts with rocks, water and air. The heat that comes up from the Earth can be used to generate electricity, and also provide warmth for homes and buildings.
What Is Renewable Energy – Biomass
Biomass while a greener choice of energy does release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere but at far less than fossil fuels. Biomass energy is generated by burning organic matter such as wood, plants, household waste etc. Biomass is another potentially endless source of energy that we as humans produce a lot of waste and this waste can be used to power our homes.
In conclusion, renewable energy has been around for years and will continue to power every aspect of our lives. But we can’t just rest on our laurels, we all need to take every step into minimizing our carbon footprint for not just our benefit but the benefit of our children and our children’s children.
Thank you for reading our article on What is renewable energy. While you are here why not read some of our other carbon busting articles such as 10 simple ways to reduce your carbon footprint and our piece on what is a heat pump and how does it work?