Renewable Energy: Green & Clean Energy

Written By: / Articles / Wednesday, 21 October 2020 18:19

Renewable energy is energy that is collected from renewable resources, which are naturally replenished on a human timescale, such as Sunlight, Wind, Rain, Tides, Waves and Geo-thermal heat. Renewable energy often provides energy in four important areas: electricity generation, air and water heating/cooling, transportation. Based on REN21’s, 2017 report renewable contributed 19.3% to humans’ global energy consumption and 24.5% to their generation of electricity in 2015 & 2016 respectively. This energy consumption is divided as 8.9% coming from traditional biomass, 4.2% as heat energy (modern biomass, geothermal and solar heat), 3.9% from hydroelectricity and the remaining 2.2% is electricity from wind, Solar, geothermal and other forms biomass. Worldwide investment in renewable technologies amounted to more than 289 billion US dollars in 2015. In 2017, worldwide investment in renewable energy amounted to 279.8 billion US dollars with China accounting for 126.6 billion US dollars or 45% of the global investment, the United States invested 40.9 billion US dollar. Globally, there are an estimated 7.7 million jobs associated with the renewable energy industries, with solar photovoltaic being the largest renewable employer. Renewable energy systems are rapidly becoming more efficient and cheaper and their share of total energy consumption is increasing. As of 2019, more than two-thirds of worldwide newly installed electricity capacity was renewable. Growth in consumption of coal and oil could end up in the near future due to increased uptake of renewables and natural gas.

       At the national level, at least 30 nations around the world already have renewable energy contributing more than 20% of energy supply. National renewable energy markets are projected to continue to grow strongly in the coming decades and beyond. Some places and at least two countries, Iceland and Norway, generate all their electricity using renewable energy already and many other countries have the set a goal to reach 100% renewable energy in the future. At least 47 nations around the world already have over 50% of electricity from renewable resources. In International Public Survey, there is strong support for promoting renewable sources such as solar power and wind power. While many renewable energy projects are large scale, renewable technologies are also suited to rural and remote areas and developing countries where energy is often crucial in human development. As most of renewable energy technologies provide electricity, renewable energy deployment is often applied in conjunction with further electrification which has several benefits: electricity can be converted into mechanical energy with high efficiency and is clean at the point of consumption. In addition, electrification with renewable energy is more efficient and therefore leads to significant reduction in primary energy requirements.

Renewable energy resources and significant opportunities for energy efficiency exist over wide geographical areas, in contrast to other energy sources which are concentrated in a limited number of countries. Rapid deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency and technological diversification of energy sources would result in significant energy security and economic benefits. It would also reduce environmental pollution such as air pollution caused by burning fossil fuels and improve public health, reduce premature mortalities due to pollution and save associated health cost that amounts to several hundred billion dollars annually in the United States. Renewable energy source, that derived their energy from the sun either directly or indirectly such as hydro and wind, are expected to be capable of suppressing humanity energy for at most another billion years at which point the predicted increase in heat from the sun is expected to make the surface of the Earth too hot for liquid water to exist. The climate change and the global warming concerns coupled with the continuing fall in the cost of some renewable energy equipment, such as wind turbine and solar panels, are driving increased used of renewables. New government spending, regulation and policies helped the industry, weather the global financial crisis better than many other sectors. In 2019, however , according to the International Renewable Energy Agency, renewables overall shares in the energy mix ( including power, heat & transport ) needs  to grow six times faster , in order to keep the rise in average global temperature “ well below” 2 degree Celsius ( 3.6 degree Fahrenheit) during present century, compared to pre-industrial levels. As of 2011, small solar PV system provides electricity to a few million households and micro-hydro configured into mini-grid serves many more. Over 44 million households use biogas made in household-scale digester for lightening and/ or cooking and more than 166 million households rely on a new generation of more-efficient bio-mass cook stoves. United Nations eight Secretary-General “Ban Ki-moon” has said that renewable energy has the ability to lift the poorest nations to a new level of prosperity. At the national level at least 30 nations around the world already have renewable energy contributing more than 20% of energy supply.

    The mainstream renewable technologies are: wind power, the worldwide its installed capacity was 633 GW; hydropower with 1,190 GW; solar energy with 586GW capacity; geothermal energy with 14GW and Bioenergy with 124GW respectively at the end of 2019. Renewable energy production from some sources such as wind and solar is more variable and more geographically spread than technology based or fossil fuels and nuclear. While integrating it into the wider energy system is feasible, it does lead to some additional challenges. In order for the energy system to remain stable a set of measurement can be taken. Implementation of energy storage, using a wide variety of renewable energy technologies and implementing a smart grid in which energy is automatically used at the moment it produced can reduce risk and cost of renewable energy implementation. In some locations individual households can opt to purchase renewable energy through a consumer green energy program.  But where does our state stand at the moment in regard to green & clean energy generation and usages?

About the Author

Sanjenbam Jugeshwor Singh

Sanjenbam Jugeshwor Singh

Sanjenbam Jugeshwor Singh is a regular contributor of Imphal Times. Presently, he is teaching Mathematics at JCRE Global College. Jugeshwor can be reached at: [email protected] Or WhatsApp’s No: 9612891339.

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