With oil reserves and supplies being rapidly depleted, the search is on for viable alternative energy sources. While numbers of alternative energy solutions have been proposed, there are only a few that actually show much promise. Among the few that have a hope to replace oil and coal electricity are solar, wind, nuclear, and hydroelectricity. We’ll summarize each of these in the next few paragraphs.
One of the most promising and well known alternative energy sources is solar energy. Most of us have played with a solar calculator or perhaps used solar power to charge a phone. Should be easy enough to mass produce these items and apply them on a bigger scale, right? Maybe, maybe not. Solar panels have historically been very expensive, only produce power at night, and require huge and costly batteries to harness their energy. However, over the last few years that has changed significantly. Solar power is becoming more recognized as a viable alternative energy, and vast arrays of solar panels have shown up in places that usually get a ton of sun. You can even produce your own solar panels for a fraction of the cost of even ten years ago.
Another great source of energy from a clean source is windmills. These huge structures have blades that catch the wind and turn them. The wind powers the blades which in turn move huge turbines to create energy. The drawback to windmills is that they have a huge upfront cost and are very weather dependent.
One of the newest forms of experimental clean energy is tidal. Using the naturally occurring rise and fall of the oceans tides, energy is gathered by creating small dams that use the tides.
Another promising source of clean energy is nuclear. Nuclear energy is one of the most long running clean energy sources. However, nuclear waste and the devastation of accidents plague it and have prevented it from becoming a more widely accepted energy alternative.
The above alternative energy sources are several of the ways the world could rid or severely reduce its dependence on polluting oil and natural gas. With advances in technology and funding from many of the worlds superpowers the future looks promising with regards to alternative clean energy.