Sustainable Energy Technologies – What Is Sustainable, Green And Clean?
Define Sustainable Energy Technologies
Sustainable energy technologies aim to provide the present generation with clean and green energy that in no way compromises on the future generation’s ability to provide for their own needs or ability to generate energy. For the last several generations humans have been exploiting resources of the planet with no thought about the future or how our children and their grandchildren will survive if we exhaust all the resources available on Earth.
Need For Sustainable Energy Sources
Already, we have guzzled most of our oil and gas reserves. What is left will serve a few generations more at most. Oil and gas take several million years to be formed under intense pressure and temperature conditions. So, once we exhaust what is available it is going to take many millions years to get new supplies. So, how will our future generations survive is planet deprived of oil and gas? Where will we get energy to power our factories and businesses? How will our buses and cars run? How will our aircrafts fly? These questions have assumed urgency as the prices of oil and gas have gone through the roof and the demand is skyrocketing as hungry developing countries join the race for scarce resources.
The need for cheap, clean and green environmentally sustainable energy technologies have become almost a necessity. The race is on to get better and cheaper alternatives for fossil fuels. Though fossil fuels have played an important role in helping countries around the world to greater and newer heights they have also brought with them the ill-effects of pollution and environmental destruction. Our planet is at peril because of the unsustainable rate at which we have polluted it. Our Earth has the ability to heal itself. A certain amount of pollution is tolerable. But, unbridled development has led to environmentally unsafe practices which have simply destroyed many communities, deprived them of livelihoods and exterminated several species of plants and animals. If we keep going at the same rate it will be impossible for our future generations to lead decent lives.
Sustainable Energy Technologies Currently In Use
It is our responsibility and duty to leave the Earth in the same state that we inherited from our forefathers. A sustainable energy technology that generates power in a way that does not impact our future generation’s ability to generate energy for their needs is the need of the hour. Great progress has already been made towards this end. A lot more needs to be done and it is a continuous and never ending process. The world is slowly but surely moving towards sustainable green energies like solar power, wind power, geo-thermal power, and ocean tide power.
For a number of years now hydro-electric power has been a major source of sustainable energy for many countries. There are some major drawbacks to using hydroelectricity. These are available only at limited locations and depend on rainfall to help in power generation. There is heavy human and environmental toll associated with hydro power as building huge dams and reservoirs needs displacement of several communities living in the area. But, there is no pollution or residues left behind because of generation of hydroelectricity.
The sun has been source of all power for the solar system. Though we use solar power is a variety of ways we have not yet been able to use it to produce electricity in the same scale as the coal or gas-fired power stations. Throughout the world research is on at a frenetic pace to make this possible. As this is a sustainable energy technology and in no ways affects our future generations this is one of most favored energy sources. Many large solar panel fields have been established and are generating significant amounts of electricity. About 1% of our planet Earth’s electricity needs are being met by solar power. The high cost of solar panels is impeding their adoption by the developing countries. Europe, America and China have rapidly adopted this technology and there are several solar panel installations contributing a significant portion of their energy needs. Solar heat concentration through use of highly polished mirrors is an inexpensive method of generating solar power and is fast catching up. Israel is a world leader in this technology.
Wind power is another favorite sustainable energy technology as it is one of the cleanest and greenest electricity generating systems. Once the wind mills are set up in suitable windy locations you get steady power for the surrounding areas. There are several million wind mills located around the world which are contributing nearly 2.5 percent of electricity needs of our current electricity needs. The search for more efficient and cheaper ways to generate sustainable energy is on. The technologies and know-how for this are in various stages of development and implementation. It is expected that in the next 50 years or so the Earth will move on to almost 100 percent environmentally sustainable, clean and green energy sources.
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