Geothermal energy is an alternative to fossil fuels. Geothermal energy uses the heat beneath the Earth's surface to heat water and turn steam turbines. Electricity is generated as a result. This alternative energy source is not feasible on a large scale basis to replace fossil fuels completely, but it may be one piece of the solution puzzle to eliminate fossil fuels and global warming. Using alternative energy sources, either individually or in combination with other alternative renewable energy sources, can help lessen dangerous carbon emissions and protect our planet. With all of these resources available, there is no need to continue using fossil fuels that clearly pollute the Earth.
When we burn fossil fuels, we actively contribute to global warming and pollution. It is important that alternative sources of energy are researched and used in order to eliminate the world's dependence on fossil fuels. If every country embraces alternative energy sources, the overwhelming problem of squandering our natural resources and perpetuating pollution will begin to disappear. Many different types of renewable alternative energy sources are available. Some of these include tidal energy, wave energy, biomass energy, solar energy, geothermal energy and wind energy. Each energy source offers advantages and disadvantages. Biomass energy uses plants and other cellulose materials, including municipal waste, to create biofuels and other natural forms of energy. This energy source is highly effective, relatively inexpensive to implement and helps eliminate wastes by using them to produce energy. Biomass energy harnesses the energy produced when plants and other organic materials decay. This is one of the most environmentally sound and efficient alternative sources of energy. Wave and tidal energy harnesses the power of the waves and the tides in the oceans and seas to generate electricity and other forms of energy. This is done using dams, underwater turbines, and barrages. The force of the water turns the turbines and this produces electricity. Tidal energy uses the force of tidal waves underneath the water, while wave energy uses the waves in the top layers of water to create energy. There is also a method called ocean thermal energy conversion. This energy source utilizes water temperature, but is still in the beginning stages of research. This method can only be used in tropical climates where the water temperature can vary more than 25 degrees between the shallow and deep water. The sun heats up the water on the surface, and the heated water is used to generate energy. Wind power is another viable alternative renewable energy source. Harnessing this energy is done with wind turbines. When the wind blows, the turbine blades spin and electricity is generated. Many rural areas and farms have wind turbines to help generate their electricity. The problem with wind power is that it cannot be accessed on demand, and it is still not practical when considering the cost to store the energy when it is not in use. Still, wind power could easily help supplement many existing power needs and lessen dependence on fossil fuels. Solar energy, another great renewable alternative energy source, comes from the rays of the sun which contain large amounts of energy. This requires solar panels, but the difficulties are the expense of the panels and the large surface area required to be effective. These panels are designed to efficiently receive solar energy and convert it into electricity or heat as needed. Solar power can be a part of the solution to global warming and fossil fuel dependence, but more research must be done to make this alternative source more cost effective.
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