Interestingly, well before Michael Faraday invented electricity, people who lived a long time ago had already devised their own ways of creating some form of energy. Thus, man could make heat, move large objects from one place to another, and even form light.
Yes, we marvel that fires actually warmed homes, shedding light. Moreover, the people used water-powered mills that made grain. Eventually, when man made greater progress, the era of steam-powered locomotives arrived.
Remarkably, up until today, we rely on some energy sources that lit up life in the past. Happily, researchers have uncovered various new, exciting forms of energy; some of these are renewable, and others are non-renewable.
But the essential question is: How can we determine the most efficient source of energy? Yes, which source of energy is the easiest to harvest? Furthermore, which source of energy will provide the needed power without harming our environment?
That’s precisely what we want to learn about.
Exploring the Most Efficient Energy Sources
Each minute, the world’s energy consumption rate continues to increase. We know that new technology, power tools, and equipment are essential in every aspect of life. Since the world’s population is growing, the need for more energy is also increasing. Keeping in mind that there are many effective sources of energy. It all depends on your location as well as the weather conditions.
Some of the most commonly used fossil fuels include petroleum, natural gas, and coal. These have been used throughout man’s history to provide power for domestic and industrial use. Notably, fossil fuels are convenient and efficient since they can be easily transported regardless of weather conditions.
Unfortunately, fossil fuels are not a renewable source of energy. In fact, experts have noted that many sources of fossil fuel are getting depleted every day. Also, fossil fuels usually emit pollution-causing toxic gases. Obviously, this contributes to the planet’s destruction.
Hydroelectricity is directly generated from dams. These dams are usually located on fast-moving power-generating waters. Next, electricity is transported by the transmission lines to power houses and commercial institutions. Hydroelectric energy is, therefore, an efficient, inexpensive, and renewable source of energy.
If the rivers are snow-fed, hydroelectricity can be much more efficient. However, since the rains are usually unpredictable, drought conditions often affect hydroelectricity production in such rain-fed rivers.
Further, geologists and other environmental experts have demonstrated that many rivers are getting polluted, the dams built across them affect the flow; this causes considerable ecological harm.
Nuclear Energy is produced through a process known as nuclear fission. This is another well-known, efficient source of energy. However, compared to other familiar sources, the nuclear reactor’s energy output is much higher.
To illustrate, a small amount of uranium can power an entire city. Nevertheless, it’s a costly undertaking to build a nuclear plant. Moreover, a nuclear plant produces radioactive substances, which can be dangerous. Unless it’s stored well, nuclear energy can cause terrible accidents. Lastly, nuclear energy is not renewable.
Tidal energy is generated from the oceanic tidal movement. It’s a safe, renewable form of energy that doesn’t emit harmful gases. Such (tidal) power plants can generate enormous amounts of power. However, it’s expensive to build a tidal power plant.
Moreover, such a plant must be constructed near land. Another negative impact relates to the fact that tidal power plants affect the ocean movement, thus harming the environment. Also, a tidal plant’s electromagnetic emissions can harm marine life.
Breaking Down Renewable Sources of Energy
Many factors contribute to the energy source score. You must examine the amount of energy that translates into electricity after absorption. Also, you must determine how much environmental cleaning went into setting up the units. Moreover, you must know the type and cost of materials that built the unit.
Let’s examine two popular most efficient renewable energy sources – solar and wind.
This is a rapidly growing source of renewable energy. It’s recognized as an efficient way to keep down the cost of power in homes and businesses. How efficient is solar power? That has much to do with the panels. You can determine the panel’s efficiency by calculating how much sunlight it takes and the amount of electricity it generates.
The average panel’s efficiency is around 15% to 20%. Comparatively, nuclear power efficiency hovers around 90%! Notably, solar panels produce no waste products.
Wind power is another leading source of renewable energy. It accounts for 8% of the energy in the US. It’s not as quiet as solar power but has an impressive efficiency rating, besides being environmentally-friendly.
How efficient is wind power? This is a bit tricky to calculate. The average rating of wind turbine efficiency is around 30%, peaking at 50%. There’s an efficiency limitation since a turbine containing too much wind can’t move. Thus, the generator won’t be powered, hence no energy.
Generally, the efficiency rating of a wind turbine is higher than that of solar panels.’ Well, you’ll discover this is particularly true if you have enough space to install giant wind turbines.
Without a doubt, renewable energy ranks high as the promoter of a better and greener future. Why do many consider renewable energy sources as superior to other sources? For instance, the energy from wind and solar can be used and reused without needing any exhaustible elements.
There are many essential factors relating to electricity generation products. Consider this: The waste produced from coal or natural gas calls for excess energy and environmental mitigation. Keeping such factors in mind, it’s clear that the total usable energy efficiency (for coal) is only 29% of the original energy value.
On its part, wind has a 50% efficiency rating. In some cases, wind energy can exceed this percentage. And -of course- there’s no pollution associated with using wind energy. From these points, it’s not surprising that millions of people worldwide are increasingly turning to renewable energy as a first choice energy solution. Are you among them?
It does not matter the source of energy that you choose, and that works for you. Whatever choice you make, rest assured that you’re choosing an environmentally friendly method when you choose a renewable energy source. Ultimately, this benefits your business and the planet.
Yes, this will, undoubtedly, benefit humanity for countless years to come.