What is green energy?
Green energy comes from natural resources like wind, plants, geothermal heat, tides, and sunlight.
They are renewable sources, which means they naturally replenish unlike oil or other fossil fuels.
Fossil fuels are finite, which means they can and will run out because they take millions of years to form again.
Green energy is also much better for the environment. It doesn’t emit greenhouse gases, which have been linked to global warming and climate change.
Retrieving fossil fuels also means drilling deep into the earth, oil spills, and other such disasters that can damage our earth and resources, whereas green energy occurs naturally and doesn’t damage either.
How does green energy impact me?
Green energy is healthy.
It doesn’t produce air pollutants like fossil fuels, it doesn’t poison our water, and it doesn’t cause much, if any, environmental damage.
Fossil fuels also cost us lots in environment and health because of greenhouse emissions that can shorten our lives and affect the growth and development of the unborn.
Some problems with fossil fuels:
- Sulfur dioxide causes acid rain and 66% of it comes from electricity generation. Sulfur dioxide affects our ability to breath, causes respiratory illness, and can annoy cardiovascular diseases.
- Carbon dioxide causes climate change and global warming, which can lead to the spread of infectious diseases like malaria, and it hurts our air quality too. Long-term effects of climate change could turn out worse than air-pollution deaths that happen today.
- Mercury is toxic metal that coal-fired power plants release. Mercury can be stored in the fat cells of fish and other animals, so when we eat them, we are also getting that mercury poisoning. Mercury can damage the central nervous system and the liver. This is why fish and sushi are not advised for pregnant or nursing women as it can hurt the baby. Mercury is constantly in our biological cycles and is, therefore, a constant problem for us now because of fossil fuel pollution.
Some benefits of green energy:
- Provide energy security and stability of energy prices, lower environmental damages and make oils spills obsolete, and help prevent climate change.
- Green energy doesn’t require transportation, and its prices shouldn’t be dependent on international trade. This should give price stability that is enviable when contrasted to the fluctuating prices of fuel.
- Wind and solar do not require water to operate and, therefore, will not pollute water supplies or drain our water resources.
- Renewable energy industry is more labor intensive and will create more jobs. And this energy will not run out, meaning those jobs will not be threatened. In 2011, the solar industry employed about 100,00 people (part and full time). This includes jobs like solar installation, sales, manufacturing the equipment, etc. In the same year, the wind energy industry employed 75,000 (full time) employees, and the hydroelectric industry gave about 250,000 people jobs in 2009. And this is just the beginning. As this industry grows the demand for jobs will only grow. These jobs are safe and don’t have you working with toxic metals and waste.
- Health. It can’t be stressed enough. Green energy makes people’s lives and the lives of their children safer and more sure.
Our best bet for the future is to invest and develop green energy—using natural resources that are easily replenished such as sunlight and wind.
Green energy means healthier lives and theoretically unlimited power resources.