What is green energy?
Green energy comes from natural resources like wind, plants, geothermal heat, tides, and sunlight. They are renewable sources, which means they naturally replenish unlike oil or other fossil fuels. Fossil fuels are finite, which means they can and will run out because they take millions of years to form again. Green energy is also much better for the environment. It doesn’t emit greenhouse gases, which have been linked to global warming and climate change. Retrieving fossil fuels also means drilling deep into the earth, oil spills, and other such disasters that can damage our earth and resources. Green energy occurs naturally and doesn’t damage either.
How does green energy impact me?
Green energy is healthy. It doesn’t produce air pollutants like fossil fuels. It doesn’t poison our water, and it doesn’t cause much, if any, environmental damage. Fossil fuels also cost us lots in environment and health because of greenhouse emissions that can shorten our lives and affect the growth and development of the unborn.
Some fossil fuel problems include:
- Sulfur dioxide causes acid rain and 66% of it comes from electricity generation. Sulfur dioxide affects our ability to breath, causes respiratory illness, and can annoy cardiovascular diseases.
- Carbon dioxide causes climate change and global warming, which can lead to the spread of infectious diseases like malaria, and it hurts our air quality too. Long-term effects of climate change could turn out worse than air-pollution deaths that happen today.
- Mercury is toxic metal that coal-fired power plants release. This toxin can be stored in the fat cells of fish and other animals, so when we eat them, we are also getting that mercury poisoning.
- Mercury can damage the central nervous system and the liver. This is why fish and sushi are not advised for pregnant or nursing women as it can hurt the baby. Mercury is constantly in our biological cycles and is, therefore, a constant problem for us now because of fossil fuel pollution.
And these are just a very few of the problems that comes from fossil fuels. Not to mention the problems with oil spills.
- Our fossil fuel resources are limited.
- They are finite and will run out someday.
- We have found enough to stay on top, but what happens when we run out?
- Our best bet for the future is to invest and develop green energy—using natural resources that are easily replenished such as sunlight and wind.
- Green energy means healthier lives and theoretically unlimited power resources.
Green energy can:
- Provide energy security and stability of energy prices, lower environmental damages and make oils spills obsolete, and help prevent climate change.
- Green energy doesn’t require transportation, and its prices shouldn’t be dependent on international trade. This should give price stability that is enviable when contrasted to the fluctuating prices of fuel.
- Wind and solar do not require water to operate and, therefore, will not pollute water supplies or drain our water resources.
- Renewable energy industry is more labor intensive and will create more jobs. This energy will not run out, meaning those jobs will not be threatened. In 2011, the solar industry employed about 100,00 people (part and full time). This includes jobs like solar installation, sales, manufacturing the equipment, etc. In the same year, the wind energy industry employed 75,000 (full time) employees, and the hydroelectric industry gave about 250,000 people jobs in 2009. As this industry grows the demand for jobs will only grow, these jobs are safe and don’t have you working with toxic metals and waste.
- Health – It can’t be stressed enough. Green energy makes people’s lives and the lives of their children safer and more sure. It is much safer for everyone, including our planet earth.
Along with price stability green energy does mean cheaper energy bills.
Here are 5 ways to lower your energy bill right now:
- Solar Panels—solar panels are more affordable and achievable than ever. Gone are the days only the rich could afford to cut down energy costs. See here for how to get solar panels installed on your roof at no cost to you, and cut down those energy costs now.
- LED Lightbulbs—LED lightbulbs can save you a lot in energy costs over the years. They cost a little extra up front (not as much as you might think), but they more than pay for themselves over the years in savings (insert link from dick here).
- Energy Saving Roofs—is a great way to use in making your home more energy-efficient. Roofing materials come in a variety of styles. A new roof can help on savings, cutting costs, and making your house more comfortable.
- Double Paned Windows—replace all your single paned windows with these energy efficient substitutes, and you can save on energy costs. Insulating gas is filled between the double pane glass to keep your home more insulated which saves you money.
- Programmable Thermostat—by using this kind of thermostat, you are able to adjust the heating and ac to a pre-set schedule. You can set the thermostat to different times you’re going to be around or need the heat/ac. The thermostat will monitor the temperature according to those times, which will prevent you from unnecessary heating/cooling and those associated energy costs.
Green energy is the way of the future. Going green is the way we’re going to be able to reduce pollution, have longer, healthier lives, and nourish our planet. With green energy, it can be infinite, and so can human progression if we all do our part. Start small with those five easy steps and save money while helping preserve our future.