So,what is clean energy?
Clean energy refers to the energy produced from natural resources that are sustainable and so can be replenished over a period of time. This energy is also known as renewable or green energy. Essentially, the production of any clean energy does not result in the creation of environmental debt. Additionally, the technologies used in producing this energy pollute less or do not pollute at all while they also do not utilize resources that cannot easily be renewed.
Let’s have a close look at the various forms of clean energy available today.
Forms of clean energy
The basic sources of clean energy include water, sun (solar) and wind. Others include biomass energy, geothermal energy, biogas energy, wave and tidal energy.
- Solar energy
This energy form utilizes technologies that tap the nuclear fusion power emitted by the sun. The energy is then collected and converted for use in various ways such as solar water heating and solar electrical energy among others. Various technologies used for harnessing solar energy include solar collectors, photovoltaic cells and solar attic fans among others.
- Wind energy
Wind is one of the most underutilized energy resource in the world today. However, it is gradually gaining popularity as an alternative and clean source of energy. Primarily, wind results from the sun’s warming of the air that in turns creates disparities in the temperatures at the earth surfaces leading to atmospheric movements. Wind energy has been in use for centuries especially in powering windmills used to pump water and mill wheat. Today, a common technology used to harness wind energy is the wind turbine that helps to generate electricity in various parts of the world.
- Water energy
There are several ways through which energy can be harnessed from water. The common ways include collecting energy from moving water (hydropower), waves, tides and ocean thermals among others.
Hydropower entails the energy derived from moving water and which makes the largest share of renewable electricity in the US. On the other hand, tidal and wave energy are two areas that are yet to be fully developed although they are considered to harbor very huge potential for the production of clean energy.
– Geothermal energy– this taps into the energy found in reservoirs of hot water and steam found beneath the earth surface.
– Biogas energy– this entails the conversion of animal waste into clean gas that can be used for heat and electricity generation.
Energy forms not considered clean energy
Also referred to as non-renewable energy forms, these resources are only available in limited supply and thus are bound to vanish over time. Moreover, the use of these energy resources result in unwanted effects to the environment such as pollution. Some of the common types of unrenewable energy include nuclear fuels, coal, natural gas and crude oil among others.
Clean energy explained
There you have it- the two categories of energy resources. The clean energy class is certainly preferred over the non-renewable energy forms since its sources are constantly being replaced while they also result in minimal impact on the environment. This is contrary to the impact that non-renewable energy resources have on the world.