Thinking About Solar Power?

While solar power sounds like the perfect solution to everyone’s energy needs, the truth is a little more complex than any blanket statement can possibly cover. The reality is that there are areas of the world where solar electric generation is a great idea that is financially competitive with other power sources and other places where you can probably have more of an environmental impact by sticking to the grid and pursuing other earth-friendly options in your life.

The most important thing to consider when thinking about switching to solar power is how much sunlight do you actually have at your command? A house that sits deep inside a knife-edged valley is not a good candidate unless it is possible to run panels way up to the canyon rim. Places that have a large degree of daily cloud cover may also be unsuitable. It may be that the amount of power needed in combination with reduced solar “insolation” levels could require a much larger number of panels to produce the requisite wattage. Any of these considerations could render solar power moot or at least prohibitively expensive.

In order to determine if this is the case or not, it is also necessary to make a reasonable calculation of how much power is actually desired on both a summer and winter basis. In most instances, people tote up the amount of power currently being used and find that only the most extravagant solar power outfit can even come close to meeting these needs. The answer lies in taking those original figures and then whittling away at them by figuring out the savings which various more-energy-efficient options can produce.

A highly efficient (and smaller) refrigerator can make a large difference, for example. Eliminating an electric stove and installing propane or gas appliances may be needed. Better insulation can cut down on the amount of power that is needed to heat the house. In all things, conservation typically ends up being cheaper than adding more power to the design, but some happy medium of the two working in harness is almost always essential.

As can be seen by the above, there is a lot more to solar power than simply bolting on a few panels and being done with it. It is important to obtain the advice, at the very least, of someone who has been there and done that before. I found some resources on this page, http://solarenergyplans.net/why-solar/, that may be helpful in your planning process. Plan everything out to the last detail before spending a penny, and you will be many dollars ahead in the long run.

Clean Renewable Energy

Clean Renewable Energy

What is Renewable Energy?

Energy that comes from resources that are being spontaneously replenished by nature are called < strong>renewable energy< /strong>. These energies that come from natural sources like biomass, compressed natural gas, geothermal power, hydroelectricity, nuclear power, radiant energy, solar power, tidal power, wave power and wind power are all < strong>clean renewable energy< /strong>.

The technology for solar energy or heat from the sun have many huge long-term benefits for the whole world, including less pollution, lower costs of abating climate change and others.

Biomass is biological material that comes from organisms. Different regions use different biomass to generate electricity. Examples – wood residues in the US, sugar cane residue in Mauritius, rice husks in Southeast Asia and poultry litter in the UK.

Geothermal energy comes from the energy generated and stored in the earth. Examples of geothermal energy are hot springs used for bathing and space heating, but now more utilized to generate electricity.

These renewable energies take the place of conventional fuels such as electricity, heating, motor fuels and others. They serve a big part of the world’s energy demands:

  • Power Generation – 21.7% of the world’s electricity is provided by renewable energy.
  • Heating – Renewable heat is provided by solar energy. Over 70 million households worldwide benefit from the solar water heating systems.
  • Transport fuels – Renewable biofuels have slowly, though not completely, replaced oil consumption worldwide.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Renewable Energy

  • The biggest advantage of renewable energy is that nature renews it and it will never run out.
  • The cost of operating and sustaining renewable energy facilities are more economical than traditional generators.
  • Renewable energy has a marginal impact on the environment because it generates negligible or no waste products like carbon dioxide and other impurities.

There are numerous benefits of using renewable energy, but we must also be aware of the drawbacks.

  • Traditional fossil fuel generators like gasoline and coal, produce huge quantities of electricity compared to the smaller amount generated by renewable energy. The world may need to cut down the usage of energy OR just build more facilities to supply a satisfactory volume of energy.
  • Renewable energy depends on the weather; and weather can be inconsistent, e.g. there is no solar energy if the sun is not shining brightly; the wind turbines will not turn if it is not windy, etc.

SOURCES:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renewable_energy
http://www.ctcleanenergy.com/BasicsofCleanEnergy/tabid/56/Default.aspx
http://www.solarschools.net/resources/stuff/advantages_and_disadvantages.aspx