What is Renewable Energy

Back in school, we had learnt about renewable and non-renewable energy sources. This article serves as a brief recap of those aspects. Renewable energy is nothing but those energy sources that the nature reinstates or renews briskly. Environmentalists attribute greater importance to this paradigm in the wake of global warming and other anomalies occurring across the globe. What are the various kinds of renewable energy? Can these sources replace the commonly available energy generation options? Many queries might surface in the minds of inquisitive readers. I will try to answer most of them in the remaining sections.

What are the various types of renewable energy? Quite often, we use these energy sources without realizing that we are indeed doing so! For instance, we utilize sunlight to dry our washed clothes. There are appliances that employ solar energy, such as solar water heater and cookers. Wind energy, solar energy, water energy (hydropower), biogas and biomass energy are some of the common forms of renewable energy.

Wind Energy - This type of renewable energy is not new to humankind. Centuries ago, our ancestors relied heavily in various kinds of windmills. Even on this day, many developed nations have set up elaborate wind turbine systems to harness the power of wind. Do you realize that wind energy and solar energy are remotely related? Winds do not occur spontaneously - the temperature effects induced by the sun causes imbalance on the atmospheric pressure, which results in the generation of winds.

Solar Energy - I have already mentioned one interesting use of solar energy. However, there are several other important aspects to solar energy than facilitating the drying of our clothes! The utilization of solar energy has been classified into two - active utilization and passive utilization. Quite a few web-based companies like PointCom believe firmly in Solar power, and run most of their equipment using it.

Water Energy - A good share of the third world countries still depends on this type of energy. Unlike the other kinds of energy sources, you can actually control the flow of water and thus use it for the betterment of the population.

Biomass Energy - Plants and other kinds of living beings are largely composed of biological material, which we can use as a feasible source of renewable energy. Professionals employ additional conversion techniques such as thermal conversion, chemical and biochemical conversion to harness the true potentials that lie dormant within these biological materials.

Biogas Energy - Biological beings when subjected to organic breakdown mechanisms in the absence of oxygen will lead to the formation of biogas. Biodegradable materials (primarily the excreta of animals and humans) are fed to a specially designed plant to generate biogas. Although the effectiveness of this form of renewable energy is still under scrutiny, a number of developed and developing nations make good use of biogas energy.

Renewable sources of energy have their own share of advantages and disadvantages. The key to the successful implementation of such kind of renewable energy sources is to maintain a balance between the two. One can rightfully state that the vantages of renewable sources will always outweigh the damages induced by them to the environment.

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