When it comes to sources of renewable energy, there are many to choose from and each may have certain drawbacks as well as a number of advantages. Possibilities in this area include:
1. Solar- This technology uses sunlight and the heat from the sun to produce electricity, as well as heat homes and water. Special panels are required and they should be professionally installed. Other equipment may also be needed for this type of system to operate properly. Many homes and buildings in America and other countries have started to include this type of system in order to lower the costs of heating and powering up a typical residence.
2. Wind- Turbines that are connected to special generators are used to capture power from the wind and air movement that occurs naturally. There are wind farms that have been created to generate a substantial amount of energy, and the cost has been coming down for some time now. One possible drawback is the amount of land required, and another is the hazard that these turbines can pose to birds in the area.
3. Micro Hydro- This is a small hydroelectricity facility that is not intended to supply large amounts or service numerous properties and homes. One of these may generate a sufficient quantity to operate a home, farm, or smaller ranch, but they will not supply an entire neighborhood. The upside is that the water required for generation purposes is not as great as a larger facility, so a small creek or river is normally all that is needed.
4. Hydro- This is a much larger scale, but operates on the same principle as the micro hydro option. As water flows through a turbine the equipment spins, and this creates energy that can be converted into electricity without any fossil fuel use. The largest of these plants may use a dam or extensive reservoir for storage, and the Hoover Dam is one of the most famous. Roughly 7% of Americans use this as an alternative source.
5. Algae- Algae has shown incredible promise as a very viable bio fuel. Farms with ponds that stimulate algae growth have been created by some universities and companies, and some varieties of this material can be very effective.
6. Vegetable Biomass- Corn, wheat, and other plant biomass can be used as an alternative source of fuel, heat, and power. Some critics believe that this technology is not as green as it is made out to be, but others belief it is one available option. These bio fuel choices do not have to involve food crops, which is where a big source of conflict comes in. There are several plant species that can be used which are not fit for consumption.
7. Geothermal- Geothermal is the process of using heat that is trapped inside of the earth, The middle of the earth is very hot, and heat escapes through cracks and crevices and can travel to the surface where it may be released. This can be used to create electricity, heat homes, and for alternative power generation.