How the use of renewable energy sources will mitigate the effects of climate change.
Climate change is one of the major challenges of our time, and is becoming an ever increasing issue in today's world. From the melting of ice caps, rising sea levels and extreme shifts in weather, including record-high temperatures are all impacts of climate change and they are unprecedented in scale. Global carbon emissions are on the rise and the use of fossil fuels is the primary factor for climate change, and the need for more renewable and sustainable energy is imperative for the future well-being of our planet.
Renewable and non-renewable energy
Renewable energy sources are an extremely necessary step towards the development of sustainable energy and reduction in the usage of fossil fuels and mitigating the effects of climate change. Renewable energy sources refer to any sources of energy that can be replenished and will never run out whereas non-renewable energy sources are finite and will run out at some point in time. Renewable energy sources do not emit any harmful greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change, so are a more sustainable choice when wanting to source energy.
"Climate change is the greatest threat to our existence in our short history on this planet. Nobody's going to buy their way out of its effects". - Mark Ruffalo
Renewable energy sources
The are multiple reliable renewable energy sources but one of the most promising and effective is the use of solar energy. Solar panels are becoming more accessible for households and are therefore becoming more common, which is helping to reducing the effects of climate change. The SUN reports that over the last decade, solar panel prices have reduced by 39% and it is stated that solar panels can reduce household energy bills by 90%, so they are very advantageous to have. Due to solar panels being very environmentally friendly and cost-effective, they are considered to be the best renewable energy source as everyone can have access to them and they are not only just beneficial for combating climate change, but also save people money on their bills over time.
In the UK, the leading source of renewable energy is the use of wind power. The are multiple wind energy farms in the UK that generate energy through the use of wind turbines that generate power by the spinning of their blades. It is researched that wind energy helps to avoid 329 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from being emitted into the atmosphere annually, which is equivalent to 71 million cars worth of emissions, so is definitely a step in the right direction for the development of renewable energy sources. Some drawbacks of wind energy is that the turbines are capable of producing noise pollution and are not aesthetically pleasing which negatively impact the landscapes in which they are located.
Another renewable energy source is geothermal energy which refers to a source of energy that is generated through the use of the Earth's heat. Molten rocks under the earth's surface heat up water stores underground. The heat from this water is then drawn to the surface and the steam from it powers a turbine, which is then turned into electricity. Due to the water reservoirs underground being naturally refilled, it makes this source renewable and sustainable. Some limitations of this renewable energy source are that the geothermal power plants can only be built in specific areas so it is limited to specific regions of the world. Another drawback is that when the power plants are build, holes must be drilled into the ground to access the water, during this process greenhouse gases that are stored underground can be released into the atmosphere.
In conclusion, the renewable energy sources are making significant progress and they are being used more frequently in today's society, which is expediting the transition to a more sustainable way of living by reducing the amount of fossil fuels that are used, reducing the amount of harmful gases emitted into the atmosphere, mitigating climate change. If more time and money was invested into renewable energy sources by all people, in the future, the world would be in a much healthier position and future generations would have much better air and water quality, making our planet a nicer place to live on.