Green (Renewable) Energy Sources
Renewable energy sources are non-fossil fuel or nuclear in nature and can be replenished in a short time frame. With only an estimated 7% of all total energy production coming from renewable energy sources, there's plenty more we can do as consumers. Read more about why you should switch to a green energy option for your home by taking advantage of these alternatives:
Solar EnergySolar energy is generally converted into electricity in 2 ways: Photovoltaic (PV devices) or Solar Cells - PV devices are most often used at locations that aren't connected to an electric grid. These cells can change sunlight directly into electricity. Solar Power Plants - These power plants produce electricity when sunlight heats a liquid (usually water) that then produces steam to turn generators.
HydropowerIt's estimated that 70-75% of all renewable energy comes from hydropower. This alternative source turns moving water into mechanical energy through steam. There are several different methods used to harness the power of water including:
- "Run of the River" systems that take advantage of a river's high point, allowing the water to run against a turbine that spins an electricity-generator.
- Reservoir storage system that uses dammed water to generate electricity
- Tidal energy the uses the tidal schedule generate energy through turbines
Biomass EnergyBiomass energy is a varying form of energy that's produced from all types of matter, including animals, plants, landfill waste, and cow manure. The production uses large boilers to burn the matter, which produces a chemical energy that creates heat and steam which turns a turbine.
Wind PowerUsed for centuries, the process of harnessing wind power consists of turbines converting the kinetic energy of the wind into mechanical energy that's then sent through a generator to produce electrical energy. The resulting electricity is then sent through lines for distribution.
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