The New Generation of Energy
- Pages: 4
- Word count: 842
- Category: Solar Energy
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The earth is slowly, but surely running low on its non-renewable energy. Resources like coal, oil, and natural gas are the most consumed each year (Gardner). Reasons for such marginal increases can range from using oil in gasoline to power cars, to providing heat through coal in fireplaces and stovetops in a kitchen. Pretty soon these forms of energy will become scarce and hard to produce, creating massive economic mood swings due to higher prices and lower quantity of needed resources (Introduction to Biofuels). It seems there has been no clear-cut solution to this problem. That is until recent advances in recyclable energy in the form of Biofuel, along with the infinite efficiency of Solar power.
Biofuels are a sustainable fuel source produced from dead plants called biomass, also called agrofuel (Introduction to Biofuels). Biofuels have been produced using all kinds of biomass sources since the dawn of time, for example corn, wheat, and recent evidence shows carcasses being used as fertilizer thousands of years ago. It has even been proposed that biofuel can be created from any carbon source (Gardner). The difficulty is to change over the biomass safely, neatly, and efficiently into the fluid fuel that powers the cars, planes, trains, and other forms of transportation that humans use every day. In previous decades, the wave of support for biofuels has become increasingly dramatic.
One of the most popular reasons is that biofuels are a much cleaner type of resource than non-renewable energy sources and in this way leaves a smaller carbon footprint too (Introduction to Biofuels). Whether it is corn, seeds, or some forms of grass, massive strands of these fuels can be developed and handled in the US. Making this technology crucial to American independence of western oil and natural gas. Biofuel creation from biowaste can otherwise address the issues with trash and human waste too. Effectively reducing the size of landfills and overall pollution.
Another form of energy can be derived from the sun called solar power. A bigger portion of the world’s useable energy will be dealt with by sunlight-based engineering that take in the warmth and light produced from the sun (Hamer). Sun powered clean energy can be utilized without being present to produce specific and efficient energy waves that pay for themselves over time. Americans should build their dependence on this earth inviting natural source. The estimate for sun powered energy in the twenty-first century is “bright”. Sun power will push the pattern of sheltered, moderate, and dependable energy. In such a plan, access to the sun through building rooftops and windows will be a key segment. Particularly in the Southwest or city regions, concentrating sunlight will give a critical level of potential energy (Hamer). Not to mention the value solar power may have in other parts of the world like the scorching sands of India or the long periods of sunlight in Alaskan summers.
Some researchers say that these forms of energy have too high of a startup cost (Utility-Scale Solar Power Is Uneconomical and Unreliable). While yes, both Bioenergy and solar power may not be cheap at the start, they do pay for themselves the longer they are in use. For example, the average solar panel costs approximately $20,000 for a 1,500 sqft home (Hamer). Yes! This is a large chunk of money on start up, but typically the average American power bill can cost up to $300 a month. While the average solar bill is between $100-$200 a month, nearly less than half the monthly bill is. Which means within about 20 years or less, customers will be earning free energy (Hamer). The best part, after you pay the Solar Panels off you potentially will never have to pay an electric bill ever again. While with biofuels, the initial costs may be higher due to an unequal distribution of energy. Overtime the more people that decide to buy and or switch to bioenergy powered products, the more refined and efficient it will be causing both production and product value costs to recede (Introduction to Biofuels: At Issue). The same way that as more automobiles gained popularity, the less the product cost to produce.
So, what now? Now that the information is public, how can it be used in day to day society? The most common of the two alternative energy sources is solar power (Hamer). This form of power is used and seen every day whether it’s to spin the little solar powered merry go round on the window sill, or the solar farms used to power nearly half a million homes worldwide. Both of which provide some sort of value either monetary or economically. In the case of biofuels, research may play a factor in how quickly people begin to see its potential to be implicated into their life (Introduction to Biofuels: At Issue). There is an obvious risk in trying to make both human and plant waste useful. But many scientists believe that the only way to get rid of our waste issue is by learning how to properly recycle it into our lives.