Renewable and non-renewable energy has long been a topic of hot debate and it is one you should certainly consider asking your electrician about the next time he visits your home. While some energy sources allow us to produce large amounts of energy with relatively little effort, the fuels we use to create that energy, like oil and gas, are non-renewable. This means we won’t be able to replace them once they’re gone.
Other energy sources, like the sun and wind, are considered renewable – meaning they’ve been around since the beginning of time and aren’t going anywhere fast. They can, unfortunately, take more money and effort to transform into usable power.
Sadly, the speed at which we are using up the world’s non-renewable energy sources is rather alarming and government bodies from around the world are becoming more serious about not only finding viable alternatives, but making them affordable as well. The following are some of the energy sources we are exhausting along with some that we could be harnessing.
Just about everything we do requires some sort of electric usage, from running appliances for lighting to cooking and running the air conditioner. Unfortunately, half of the electricity used to power the world is produced by burning coal. Coal is considered a non-renewable resource and scientists believe that if we continue at our current rate we will be out of coal in just about 200 years.
Biomass is the term used to refer to energy that is made when we burn the excess from food crops. The steam from the fires is used to fuel a turbine. The turbine causes a generator to work and then turns the power from the generator into electricity. Biomass is renewable but is not feasible for mass energy production as we would not have enough space to grow crops for food and fuel at the same time.
Hydropower is an incredible source of electricity. Falling water, like you’d find at a waterfall, creates what is known as kinetic energy. A mechanical process is used to take the kinetic energy and transform it into electric energy. Hydropower is considered a renewable energy source and is already used today. Some of the most popular hydropower production plants in the USA can be found at Niagara Falls and the Hoover Dam.
Solar energy takes the UV rays from the sun and puts it through a series of transformation processes that turn it into usable electricity. Solar power is an incredible source of energy that manufacturers have been experimenting with for use in powering homes and businesses.
Local energy companies have been installing solar panels on telephone poles in an effort to generate extra electricity and homeowners now have the option of installing solar panels on their roofs. These panels not only generate enough electricity to power a home and charge backup batteries but can also produce enough extra electricity to sell back to the energy companies for a profit. You may find it is worth asking your Wilmington DE electrician about the possibility of using solar power in your own home.
Wind power is another popular source of energy, using wind-powered turbines to create electric energy. While wind power is growing in popularity, very few areas are incorporating wind power production methods because of the expense associated with buying land and building the windmills necessary to produce the power needed to run a business or supply a town with energy.
As you can see, technology is evolving and the world continues to scramble to find new ways of producing energy by renewable means. Until then, talk to your electrician in DE about some of the things you can do to conserve power, lessening your own impact on our non-renewable resources.