Friday, May 2, 2008

RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES


Cleaner air and a greener world is the best gift we can give to our next generation. Use of Renewable energy is the key to an environment friendly world in which the human foot steps are much cleaner and greener, for the past eight decades with our carbon foot steps we have been marching all over mother earth making her ugly and less productive by every passing minute.
Renewable energy and its sources are not new at all; in fact planet earth is a composition of renewable energy resources. Today not only the modern and power full nations of the world are utilizing the renewable energy but also the poor and the third world countries are working hard to exploit these free and unlimited means of energy, careful use of renewable energy is a smart choice over fossil fuel, as environment friendly and renewable sources of energy help maintain the delicate balances created by nature for the survival of this planet.
Definition renewable energy:
If we wish to define renewable energy, it can be stated that renewable energy, are practically inexhaustible resources of energy, that are available free and in abundance and there exploitation is not harmful towards the life and any type of natural environmental balance on the planet.
Resource and types of renewable energy.
Life is renewable energy, if we look around carefully we should be able to find means of renewable energy all around us, in fact it is safe to state that renewable energy is what makes our days, days and nights, nights. We eat them and breath them, they satisfy our thirst, and hunger. In there natural and pure states they help improve our mental and physical health. There organized exploitation is ancient, and common.
Energy that is generated form SUN, WIND, WATER, TIDAL WAVE, BIOMASS and GEOTHERMAL POWER IS renewable energy. All these resources are naturally produced by actions and reactions that take place either on or with in the planet. On the other hand Sunlight, and solar reflection on the moon are coming to us from the atmosphere and space above the ozone layer, and solar energy is the major or basic driving force behind all resources of renewable energy.
Renewable energy and world’s energy production:
The share of renewable energy in world energy production and consumption is very low at the moment, according to the stats collected for 2006 only 18% of the global energy needs were being fulfilled through different sources of renewable energy, out of which 13% came from traditional wood and biomass burning, while the next biggest source of renewable energy is hydro power with 3% of its contribution in world energy production. Renewable energy was also generated through hot water, and its share was on 1.3%, rest of the 0.8% came from modern means of renewable energy such as geothermal, wind, solar, and ocean energy together.

Renewable energy and negative propaganda:
There is a great deal of negative propaganda against the different sources of renewable energy. Non-predictability, high cost, low production are the most common threats that are propagated against renewable energy. So much so that a large number of environmentalist accused windmill as a threat to the birds and other wild life. Close study of the situation reviled that due to large slow moving propeller modern wind turbines are not a threat to the wild life, in fact the number of birds and animal killed in road accidents by small and large vehicles is far more then those killed from renewable energy resources. On the other hand environmental contamination caused by conventional fossil fuel is responsible for the extinction of many precious species of wild life.

Renewable energy potential:
Though currently renewable energy makes a small portion of world’s energy, but renewable energy posses the potential to fulfill all global energy requirements. The market for renewable energy is increasing at a great pace in fact 100% growth in both solar and wind energy has been recorded in the past 5 years. Wind energy has installed capacity of over 100 GW worldwide, and this source of renewable energy is chiefly being utilized in Europe and USA. While 2000 MW was the manufactured photovoltaic products worldwide by 2006.
While Germany is investing in photovoltaic projects, Spain and USA, are concentrating on solar thermal power projects of renewable energy. The largest of solar thermal renewable energy power project is located Mojave Desert, with the production capacity of 354 MW at SEGS power plant, and the world's largest geothermal power installation is The Geysers in California, with a rated capacity of 750 MW.
Bio ethanol is another type of renewable energy which is driven from biomass, it wont be wrong to call it the an organic diesel. Brazil is the largest producer and user of bio diesel and ethanol now fulfils over 18% of the country’s fuel requirements.
Although large-scale renewable energy projects are a great relief to the environment, but the concept and the technology of renewable energy is best suited for small scale off the grid power production to avoid line loss. Small-scale renewable energy projects done on local and individual bases are a huge step towards sustainability.
It is evident that the cost and labor required supplying and maintaining power in far-flung isolated areas is often to high, and renewable energy seems to be the most efficient solution. Installation and implementation of renewable energy resources, such as solar power projects, wind energy, biogas and other alternative means of energy help create self sufficiency on individual and small scale community grounds.
Kenya for example has the larges ratio of individually owned over 30,000 solar power systems ranging from 20 to 100 watts as a source of renewable energy.
Fossil fuel and renewable energy:
Means of renewable energy and there application face a lot of opposition and competition with the multi trillion dollar fossil fuel industry. So much so that the capitalist involved in the oil and power business invested to promote negative press over the resources and utilization of renewable energy. The most common propaganda against renewable energy has been the major initial cost and inefficiency. Luckily with the passage of time, factors such as climate change, peak oil price and fuel insecurity helped renewable energy and its resources to gain the popularity and respect it deserved. Fossil fuel has been a major cause of centralization in distribution allover the world, an event-taking place in Asia has been effects felt all over Europe and USA. Now the increase in the cost of oil and the on going conspiracy scam of war on terror has created a great deal of instability and insecurity for people all over the world both in terms of fuel and food. Other then this our world is changing every day in terms of the environment, and climate. The air we breath in the water we drink and the food we eat is not safe and healthy any more all this again because of the increasing pollution. The delicate life cycle has been tempered and its taking its toll on mankind. In an era of such insecurity renewable energy seems to be the solution, which suits the best to modern human society. Renewable energy is able to fulfill our energy needs with little or no compromise on our luxurious lifestyles. Today in our much aware world its not hard to state that renewable energy is the source of keeping the civilization alive.
Renewable energy and global commitment:
With an increasing awareness about the global warming and environment change, the commitment towards a carbon free environment friendly world is becoming strong. More and more businesses and governments are working hard to look green. Use of renewable energy in public and private sector is also growing; companies that were doing huge businesses in the power sector are investing extensively in renewable energy. On the other hand governments are committing and working hard for switching on renewable energy. In march 2007 leaders of EU agreed on producing 20% of there energy from renewable energy resources, in order to cut carbon emissions at a significant rate.
The capital being poured in renewable energy was $ 80 billion in 2005, which jumped to $100 billion in 2006 and is mounting at a great pace. In 2007 the investment in renewable energy and alternative means of power increased even more. According to the renewable energy fuel mandate, USA is committed to an increase of 500% in the production of renewable energy fuels by the year 2022. this mandate is the part of EISA singed by president bush in December 2007, Read more [http://www.america.gov/st/texttrans-english/2008/March/20080305175150xjsnommis0.5022394.html].
Companies like, BP, GENERAL ELECTRIC, SHARP and the ROYAL DUTCH SHELL are investing in solar energy and other means of renewable energy sector.
Renewable energy employment and revenue:
According to the ASES report on renewable energy, 8 million people were employed in renewable energy production and distribution by 2006, this number is increasing significantly since then, ASES also stated that $ 933 billion were generated in the direct sales of renewable energy products and services in USA only, with profits of $100 billion. The increased federal and local government tax generation on renewable energy was $150 billion. According to this 2006 report 196,000 people were directly employed in the field of renewable energy and about 452,000 were involved indirectly employed one way or the other in renewable energy application and production.

Sun and renewable energy:

Almost all types of renewable energy are directly or indirectly driven from sun, in direct types of sun driven renewable energy, photovoltaic panels, solar heaters, solar thermal power plants are common. Sun is the driving force behind wind as well so wind driven renewable energy such as electricity generated from modern wind turbines, or renewable energy in form kinetic power for crushing wheat floor in traditional windmills. A large amount of solar radiation is absorbed by oceans and other water bodies and stored in form of thermal energy, which is another type of renewable energy. Solar energy is also responsible for wave motion which helps turn mechanical energy into electricity another great source of renewable energy. Sun light is responsible of photosynthetic in plants and other biomass which is becoming a popular source of renewable energy solar energy is also responsible for hydroelectric projects and power generation.

Main and modern renewable energy technologies:


· Sun driven renewable energy: Photovoltaic, solar water heating and solar thermal power plants.

· Wind driven renewable energy: wind mills and wind turbines.

· Water driven renewable energy: Hydro power projects, dams, wave power, tidal and tidal stream power, hydroelectric.

· Bio fuel and biomass renewable energy: biogas, bio ethanol, bio diesel, and solid biomass.

· Geothermal renewable energy: heat from earth core used for heating and power generation.
Solar renewable energy:

In the world of renewable energy the power directly driven from sunlight is termed as solar energy. Solar renewable energy can be produced in many ways but the most basic include:
Generating electricity using photovoltaic solar cells.
Generating electricity using concentrated solar power.
Generating electricity using by heating trapped air to rotate the turbines in a solar updraft tower.
Other solar renewable energy utilization includes, solar ovens and cookers, solar water heaters, solar chimneys and solar air conditioning. Even satellites are powered using solar renewable energy. Heating buildings using sunlight, and solar water and air heating does passive use of solar renewable energy.

Wind renewable energy:
Renewable energy through wind is not new; our primordial were using windmills for generating kinetic energy, in Persia, and in the Mediterranean. Netherlands been using wind mills to dry out shallow marshy areas for more land.
Modern wind turbines use this kinetic energy and convert it into electricity, this is one of the major sources of renewable energy with carbon emissions, airfoils or propellers are pushed and rotated due to there aero dynamics by wind, this rotation works on creating power from the dynamo generator of the wind turbines. Wind turbines range from 600 KV to 500 MW in terms of power, the most commonly used commercial wind turbines generate about 1.5-3 MW.
Wind power is the fastest growing source of renewable energy, not only huge wind turbine farms are being installed but also wind turbines are coming in small size for local community and individual use. With hybrid, savonius, darius types of wind turbines and efficient aero turbines wind mills are becoming the most common and wind spread source of renewable energy at the end of 2003 renewable energy produced through wind was over 40,000 MW. Currently the annual growth rate of renewable energy produced by wind turbines is about 30% annual. EU is switching to wind energy at a very fast pace in fact UK plans on switching all its power need and production on wind renewable energy by 2020. wind energy is not only being harvested on land but also from sea shores and off shore wind turbine farms as well. Off shore wind harvesting is 90% grater compared to the on land wind renewable energy production.
Wind speed near the earth surface varies so continues power generation can’t be garneted until combined with some sort of power inverter, and storage system. It is roughly estimated that conventional capacity of 1000MW of wind powered renewable energy results in only 333MW of continuous power.
In the UK, a licence to build the world's largest offshore windfarm, in the Thames estuary, has been granted. The London Array windfarm, 12 miles off Kent and Essex, should eventually consist of 341 turbines, occupying an area of 90 square miles. This is a £1.5 billion, 1,000 megawatt project, which will power one-third of London homes. The windfarm will produce an amount of energy that, if generated by conventional means, would result in 1.9 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions every year. It could also make up to 10% of the Government's 2010 renewables target.
Read more about Aero turbines at: http://thegreenbend.blogspot.com/2008/04/aeroturbine-next-generation-wind-energy.html

Water renewable energy:
Hydropower is an ancient type of renewable energy; Dams were made on streams, rivers, and deltas, for irrigation and production of renewable kinetic or mechanical energy. Water carries an amazing amount of motive and temperature difference renewable energy.
The renewable energy harnessed from water is 800 times denser then air.
Hydroelectric renewable energy is a term usually reserved for large-scale hydroelectric dams. Examples are the Grand Coulee Dam in Washington State and the Akosombo Dam in Ghana.
Micro hydro renewable energy systems are hydroelectric power installations that typically produce up to 100 kW of power. They are often used in water rich areas as a Remote Area Power Supply (RAPS).There are many of these installations around the world, including several delivering around 50 kW in the Solomon Islands.
Damless hydro renewable energy systems derive kinetic energy from rivers and oceans without using a dam.
Wave power uses the renewable energy in waves. The waves will usually make large pontoons go up and down in the water, leaving an area with reduced wave height in the "shadow". Wave power has now reached commercialization.
Tidal power captures renewable energy from the tides in a vertical direction. Tides come in, raise water levels in a basin, and tides roll out. Around low tide, the water in the basin is discharged through a turbine.
Tidal stream power captures renewable energy from the flow of tides, usually using underwater plant resembling a small wind turbine. Tidal stream power demonstration projects exist, and the first commercial prototype will be installed in Strangford Lough in September 2007.
Ocean thermal renewable energy conversion (OTEC) uses the temperature difference between the warmer surface of the ocean and the colder lower recesses. To this end, it employs a cyclic heat engine. OTEC has not been field-tested on a large scale.
Bio fuel and renewable energy:
Photosynthetic is a natural process under which plants produce biomass, which helps them grow. This biomass is also known as bio matter, and can be used directly as fuel or can be processed into bio fuel.
Bio fuel driven from agro products is bio diesel, ethanol or biogas.
Liquid bio fuel:
Liquid bio fuel is usually either a bio alcohol or bio ethanol fuel, such as bio diesel and vegetable oil. Bio fuels can be used in vehicles with little or no modification. Use of bio fuels reduces carbon emissions by 20% to 40%. Corn, sugar beet, switch grass, sugar cane and corn stalks are being grown in South and North America as well as Asia as specifically to produce different types of bio fuel renewable energy, such as ethanol a liquid fuel that can be used to run combustion engines. E85 is an example of renewable energy bio fuel that contains 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline and is being sold to the consumers.
Liquid bio fuel has reached its third generation and is now being produced from algae.
Read more about 3rd generation bio fuel at : http://environment2energy.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2008-02-14T23%3A13%3A00%2B05%3A00&max-results=1
Biogas or anaerobic digestion renewable energy:
Biogas is a great source of renewable energy; this renewable energy is driven from organic waste produced by animals, humans and plants. For example bio methane gas is a renewable energy that is driven from a process of digestion done on animal dung and organic wastes, in this process bacteria breaks down the organic input which as a result releases methane gas, this methane gas can be used for producing electricity or an be used directly for fire. Renewable natural gas is a biogas which has been upgraded to a quality similar to natural gas. By upgrading the quality to that of natural gas, it becomes possible to distribute the gas to the mass market via gas grid. Alternatively biogas can be produced via advanced waste processing systems such as mechanical biological treatment. These systems recover the recyclable elements of household waste and process the biodegradable fraction in anaerobic digesters.
Bio gas renewable energy is being produced all over the world, India and other third world countries are using this renewable energy.
http://youtube.com/watch?v=JYmOb4mDdUE
http://youtube.com/watch?v=gklJIPFyhIc
Geothermal renewable energy:
Heat trapped under the earth surface is another type of renewable energy, Such geothermal power sources exist in certain geologically unstable parts of the world such as Iceland, New Zealand, United States, the Philippines and Italy. The two most prominent areas for this in the United States are in the Yellowstone basin and in northern California. Iceland produced 170 MW geothermal power and heated 86% of all houses in the year 2000 through geothermal energy. Some 8000 MW of capacity is operational in total
Read more about geothermal renewable energy at : http://www.eia.doe.gov/kids/energyfacts/sources/renewable/geothermal.html

Renewable enrgy and world feature:
Although renewable energy is cattering a very tiny of the worlds current energy use but with factors like peek oil price and climate change it seems that renewable enrgy will be fueling the world with in next 3 to 4 decades.
Renewable energy is becoming cost effective day by day, new and cheaper types of solar panels and efficient aero turbines are becoming more and more available. Out put of renewable energy are also improving, alternative energy resources such as biogas and ethanols are also very promising. Huge companies that run on means of renewable enrgy, such as are launching products and daily use commodities like Air cars, solar motor bikes and solar mp3 players.
Read about these products that run on renewable energy at;
http://thegreenbend.blogspot.com/2008/04/air-powered-car.html
http://environment2energy.blogspot.com/
http://www.jessenbug.com/articles-categories/17-technology/25-solar-powered-mp3video-player.

Sustainability and renewable energy
Many argue and contradict about the productivity of renewable energy, some say that they will pollute the environment, others argue about the cost and production myth. There are some who say that renewable energy covers vast lands, and there are those who say that production of renewable energy with agro product will create food insecurity.
All this negativity is just another organized capitalist gimmick in the favor of fossil fuel and globalization. Although the current fossil fuel powered globalization is the cause of famine, hunger, food and fuel insecurity and forged war on terror which was only started to capture the remaining hubs of oil.
Renewable energy is some thing very close to human nature of freedom and self-stuffiness. Renewable energy brings sustainability by freeing us from centralized grids. Renewable energy is responsible for a much cleaner air to breath and more over almost all sources of renewable energy start putting money back into our pockets in a few years. SO invest in renewable energy today and make money for the rest of your life.

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