Renewable energy technologies are clean sources of energy that have a much lower environmental impact than conventional energy technologies. It is a well known fact that currently governments throughout the world are exploring the various possibilities of renewable energy, seeking for the best way to incorporate them into their total energy budget. But still, questions such as feasibility and cost remains.
First, let’s review some of the common renewable energy which are suggested today:
1. Solar Energy – Can be used directly for heating and lighting homes and other buildings, for generating electricity, and for hot water heating.
2. Wind Energy – Captured with wind turbines and generate electricity.
3. Ocean Energy – Tidal or wave energy, which are driven by both the tides and the winds.
4. Geothermal Energy – Uses the Earth’s internal heat for electric power production
5. Bioenergy – The energy from any decomposed organic matter. Has the potential to greatly reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.
6. Hydrogen Energy – Can be found in many organic compounds, as well as water. Once separated from water, hydrogen can be burned as a fuel or converted into electricity.
In the UK, The total of all renewable electricity sources provided 11.3 % of the electricity generated in 2012, and predicted to rise up to 15 % by 2020. In the US, renewable electricity sources provided 13.2 % of the domestically produced electricity in 2012, using the different sources as shown in this following diagram.
Latest statistics indicates that the use of renewable energy is gradually growing yearly, though will it ever replace conventional sources?. To my opinion probably not, due to renewables reletivly high cost and availability. The general world trend in energy production seems to be a combination of all the different resources such as fossil fuels, nuclear and renewable energies.
In the future, with advanced and cheeper technologies, renewables will probably be more affordable and hopefully will increase their portion as a resource and replace the use of fossil fuels.
Watch this interesting video to learn more about the future of energy: