Benefits Of Green Energy Sources

March 1, 2012 by  
Filed under Eco Green Living HQ

For a very long time, we have relied on fossil fuels. It provides heat to our homes, gas for our cars and electricity. Since we are now using it more than ever, there is a consequence. We are depleting our resources and slowly killing our planet. Fortunately, we can change our ways and then shift our attention to green energy sources.

But why green energy sources? Well because there are advantages to using them which we will never be able to get if we don’t change our ways. This is also even if some will argue that the problem with green energy is that it is sometimes difficult to generate the power we need. While that may be true, that is why there are other green energy sources available and we just to know which ones are viable given the geographic location.

The various green energy sources such as solar, wind, wave, hydropower and geothermal do not produce anything harmful which may have a negative effect on the environment. This is the exact opposite of what you get when you continue to operate a coal or nuclear power plant.

Coal you have to remember releases carbon dioxide into the air. On its own, it may not cause that much damage but there are currently 50,000 coal plants around the world and that number is expected to grow.

Nuclear plants may not release anything harmful into the air. The issue is how we dispose of the spend rods and if another nuclear accident should occur. We remember Chernobyl and Three Mile Island. We have probably learned better ways to prevent another incident from happening. Through the years, a few minor accidents have occurred and although the leak was contained, just imagine if it wasn’t?

Green energy sources may not be maintenance free but at least it does not require that much to maintain them compared to conventional means. In the end, we save money because such facilities don’t cost that much to operate.

The next advantage of using green energy sources is that we will never run out of them. For centuries, the sun’s rays have reached so has the wind which is blown from the sea. By using it, we decrease our dependence on oil which is a nonrenewable resource.

If you think about it, many of us have taken these green energy sources for granted. If we do the right thing now, future generations will not have to face the mess that we could have handled on our own years before.

In short, the power is in our hands. We have the technology and we know what to do with it. The only thing we need is to do is to put our money where our mouth is because despite the number of conferences on global warming and climate change, little has happened.

It is easy to talk about how concerned we are about the environment but you have to ask yourself when will more solar panels or wind turbines will be erected? When will the number of coal or nuclear power plants be reduced?

Green energy sources is the solution to the environmental, political and social problems of this lifetime. By spending more on these technologies, no country will have to depend on another or even a corporation for their power needs because they are self dependent and free.

Biofuels Are A Green Energy Source

February 19, 2012 by  
Filed under Eco Green Living HQ

Biofuels are also a green energy source. It has been around for a very long time and lately, people are beginning to take notice.

Liquid biofuel which is the one used in cars is a natural and renewable domestic fuel that can only be used for diesel engines. This can be made from vegetable oils mostly soy and corn. The nice thing about it is that it contains no petroleum, is nontoxic and biodegradable.

By fueling up with biofuel, you decrease the pollutants in the air because it does not emit anything. Right now, it is the only fuel approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), passed every Heath-Effects Test of the Clean Air Act and meets the requirements of the California Air Resources Board (CARB).

One example of this is biodiesel which is made from alcohol like methanol and a chemical process that separates glycerine and methyl esters (biodiesel) from fats or vegetable oils. Aside from methanol, some countries have also experimented with corn and sugarcane to create their own version of biofuel.

Glycerine is a common products and this is used in making toothpaste and soap. Since it is quite new, the process of converting it is quite expensive and right now, this is still much more expensive per gallon compared to petroleum.

But if you look at what you pay for it, the returns are huge because you get to do your share to preserve a cleaner environment, an improvement in air quality and a reduction of cancer-causing agents.

A cheaper and primitive way to make bio-diesel is by collecting cooking oil and then processing it. This may not good your car’s engine so be careful if you decide to use it.

If you are skeptic about biodiesels, studies have shown that its performance on the road is just as good as petroleum in terms of power to efficiency, hauling and climbing. You can use this in its pure form or blend with petroleum fuel. The most common mix in the market is 20/80 and is referred to as “B20.” This means that 20% is biodiesel and the remainder is 80%. Another version is the E85 which is fuel composed of 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline.

The best part about using biodiesel is that you only have to make a few changes in your engine to be able to use it. Aside from making the car run, it also helps clean the engine. If you are concerned that this will void the warranty of your vehicle should there be a problem, don’t worry because it doesn’t. In the US, B20 is the most common one available but there are only a few gas stations that carry it.

When car’s first rolled out in the beginning of the 20th century, Henry Ford planned to make these vehicles especially the Model T’s run using ethanol. Tests have even shown that these may also run using peanut oil.

This never materialized because huge oil deposits were discovered and diesel was cheap. It was only when our demand for oil increased in the 1970’s, 1980’s, 1990’s and in the early part of this year that people began to realize that to reduce our demand for foreign oil that we should try using biodiesels and other forms of alternative energy.

Is it too late? Not yet because there is still time to use biofuels and others as green energy sources.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Using Green Energy Sources

January 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Eco Green Living HQ

What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Green Energy Sources?

Today, we are now aware of the effects of global warming. Fortunately, it’s not too late and we can still change which is why many are pushing for green energy sources.

The advantage of using green energy sources is that it is clean so it does not emit anything harmful into the air which has an impact on the environment. It is also renewable which means we will never run out of it unlike oil which is expected to dry up in a decade or so.

Although green energy facilities are expensive to build, it requires less maintenance so you don’t have to shell out a lot of money to operate it.

It can also bring economic benefits to certain areas even boost tourism.

While these sound good, there are some who say that there are advantages to using such technology.

While green energy sources can produce electricity, how much it can generate is not consistent. This is because we have no control of the weather so if a certain area relies on solar energy and there is a weather disturbance, it will not be able to convert sunlight into electricity.

Building these facilities also requires a lot of land so we may have to cut on farmland which is what many are concerned about if more wind turbines are to be put up.

Another disadvantage is the fact that some of the green energy sources cannot be installed in certain areas of the planet. For instance, wave energy can only be utilized if the waves coming from the ocean reach at least 16 feet. The use geothermal energy can only be done in geologically unstable parts of the planet.

But if you look at such arguments, places that cannot use one form of green energy source can be substituted for another. If wind turbines need more space, they can be installed near the coast instead of putting these on land. A study shows that you can generate more electricity while these are in the ocean.

While the weather is something we cannot control, it is not everyday that there is a weather disturbance so this too shall pass. If solar energy is being used and the sun is covered, the emergency generators will be activated and use up the energy that was stored.

The point is that there are ways around the arguments put by certain individuals which discourage the use of green energy sources. In fact, research is ongoing to try and harness other means to generate the power we need.

A very good example of this is called ocean thermal energy. Power is generated by harnessing the different temperatures in the water. It is currently being used on a small scale both in Japan and Hawaii.

In the US, only 7% of green energy sources are used nationally. This was much higher 11 years ago and if we don’t have to worry about the cost of oil or even reduce our dependency on it, we have to invest more in this clean energy.

We can get it from green energy sources such as biomass, biodiesel, geothermal, solar, water and the wind. These are things we have all around us and all it takes is for someone to harness it instead of relying on traditional non-renewable means to produce energy.

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