Saving Money and Powering Lives with Solar Energy The use of natural gas and petroleum has powered our homes, cars and lives for decades now. We’ve harbored and mastered their energy producing potential. Unfortunately, they are non-renewable resources, and once they’re gone, there’s no getting them back. Not without waiting millions of years for new fossils to form and produce our oil. Consequently, we’ve been in the energy race of our lives over the past couple decades, striving to find a useful alternative to fossil fuels. Many ideas have been formed and failed, drawn up and torn to shreds. Only a few have truly become useful to us as a people. They tend to be more expensive alternatives, but they are generally renewable, as long as we continue to experience such natural influences such as the wind and sun.
Wind Turbines The first option has been wind turbines. They dot the landscape in Wyoming and have started spreading throughout the states where high winds are prominent. These massive windmills are beasts at creating electricity. Each one can create more than enough power for a small community of people. To power a city though, you need a lot more than just a few. For Americans to comfortably use electricity at the same rate they have done in the past, the costs of creating that many turbines would be through the roof. No city could afford to switch to wind powered cities. Some places don’t even have you just can’t hack it on the limited amount of wind that they get. The turbines would sit for hours at a time, doing absolutely nothing for anyone while residents depleted the stores they built up during the day. Solar energy can remedy some of these problems.
Solar Generators Solar powered generators receive their energy for twelve to fifteen hours per day, despite whether or not there is a breeze. The only thing that could slow its absorption down during the day is extremely cloudy days and shade.
Even then, they continue to store a small amount of energy for later use. Although the technology is not perfect yet, they stand as a great beginning to a natural, renewable opportunity to borrow and store energy. Solar powered generators are not one hundred percent efficient, nor can the smaller ones power a home on a daily basis, but they are perfect for providing some energy for your home. They can be used as backup or sub-generators. When used as the latter, you can drastically reduce your energy bill by burning your solar energy throughout most of the day. After a couple years of this, the generator pays for itself and you begin to truly save money on your utilities. It’s possible that solar energy might not be the way of the future, but it sure has a lot of potential. If we can learn to harness the incredible energy of the sun—taking a second to note that most of that energy is sent to earth, only to hang uselessly within our atmosphere—we could have unlimited potential. For now, we’ll stick to powering a home, or a car. But in the future, nothing will be able to keep us from powering our cities and our communities with these things. Photo Credit: energy-alaska, solar-power-generators