There has been a significant increase in the transition to green energy in the recent past. Renewable energy could become the primary power source if the government and other key industry players continue to invest in the technology. The increased interest and investment in renewable energy is a step in the right direction. Renewable energy has a host of advantages over fossil fuels. One of the greatest advantages of green energy is its zero-carbon emission. Fossil fuel emits harmful gases to the environment that cause degradation of the environment. These gases destroy the ozone layer and pollute the environment. Therefore, the rise in the use of renewable energy conserves the planet.
What Is Renewable Energy
Renewable energy is any natural energy source, including the sun, wind, water, and geothermal energy. These natural energy sources provide green energy free of carbon emissions and have many advantages over fossil fuels.
About twenty years ago, the government started to invest heavily in the renewable energy sector. The investment has paid off as the country now produces at least ten percent of its electricity from natural resources. The sun and the wind are the main sources of green energy. According to statistics, renewable energy accounted for only 2.5% of power ten years ago. The growth has been commendable and signifies the rise in popularity of renewable energy. Today, power from the sun, wind, and geothermal plants account for ten percent of the country’s power grid.
The increased use of renewable energy has had a tremendous impact on different spheres of life. A few years back, the energy-saving LED bulb cost $30. Today, the bulb costs a few dollars. The rise of renewable energy sources has also affected the transport industry. Due to the increase in the availability of renewed energy, some companies now exclusively manufacture electric vehicles. Companies that produce gas-powered vehicles also follow suit and manufacture vehicles that use electricity for propulsion.
Thanks to continuous improvement and research, the avenues and capability of producing green energy are on the rise daily, which is a step in the right direction. Renewable energy is not only clean but also sustainable. The development of clean energy has shown that the energy source can provide the needed electricity to power industries, businesses, and homes. The results are encouraging, and the nation should embrace the use of this clean source of power.
Additionally, the price of renewable energy is falling. Technology for better use of renewable energy is also advancing. Therefore, each city, county, state, and the federal government should continuously strive to make renewable energy the primary power source.
Statistics On The Rise Of Solar Power
Many states in the USA are embracing the use of renewable energy. According to statistics, all the states have increased the uptake of renewable energy over the last decade. Below are a few states that have increased the use of renewable energy between the years 2010 to 2019.
For example, California has increased its solar power generation by 41,255 GWh over the last ten years. The increase is quite commendable, and the high-power generation rate has rocketed the state to the first position in the country. The state has also increased wind generation by 8,891 GWh in the same period, and the state ranks 6th in the country in wind generation. California produces 58,771 GWh of combined wind and solar power capable of providing electricity to 5.4million homes. California also ranks number 1 in battery power storage capacity. The state increased its battery storage capability by 254.5MW, the highest in the country.
What Has Contributed To The Rise Of Renewable Energy?
The Federal and State Governments Policies
Both the federal and state governments have amended policies that contribute to the growth of renewable energy. The states have diversified energy uptake from different natural resources through these policies, including the sun, wind, and geothermal energy. One of the greatest contributors to the rise of green energy is a policy that makes it mandatory for any power-selling company to source a percentage of its power from a renewable energy source.
Climate Change Concerns
The second reason that has immensely contributed to the rise of renewable energy is the concern over climate change. The atmospheric temperature has been steadily rising due to global warming. Global warming has a host of negative impacts on the environment, including changing weather patterns, rising water levels, and loss of habitat for flora and fauna that live in extremely cold environments. Therefore, the negative impacts of global warming have forced the federal government to adopt clean energy to reduce the effect of global warming. Green energy does not produce greenhouse gasses that lead to rising atmospheric temperature.
The Cost To Produce Green Energy Is Steadily Declining
In the last decade, the cost of producing renewable energy has significantly decreased. Wind and solar production costs continue to decline. With the production of green energy becoming more affordable, it is easier for organizations and individuals to use clean energy as their source of power. Solar and wind power can now favorably compete with traditional sources of power.
Major Corporations are Transiting to Renewable Energy
Most established companies are also adopting the use of green energy. The uptake has seen the rise of clean energy. These established companies like General Motors have also improved the technology to harness renewable energy. Some companies have also committed to reducing their carbon footprint and are now entirely using clean energy to power their operations. However, for these organizations to adopt green energy, the suppliers must also provide favorable terms for these organizations to adopt green energy.
The Rise Of Solar Energy In The United States
In the US, solar power production and use have risen. The country installed its two millionth solar photovoltaic system in 2021. According to experts, the country will embrace more technology to enhance the effective use of solar power from 2021 to 2025, which will be 42% higher compared to the period between 2016 to 2020. In 2010, solar contributed only one-tenth percent of America’s electricity grid. However, the rate has exponentially gone up. In 2019, solar contributes to 2.6% of America’s electricity. In 2019, solar power added nearly 40% to the national electricity grid.
Additionally, the price of solar power is dropping while the technology to harness this power is improving. Solar panels are now more effective than they were a few years ago. The improvement means the panels produce more power. Solar energy also has unlimited potential. According to experts, the US can meet its electric needs seventy-five times over by using solar power.
Additionally, every state has the potential to meet its electricity needs using solar energy. However, to enhance the advancement of solar energy, the federal government should subsidize the tax levied on solar products. States should also offer rebate programs and tax relief and extend financial aid to solar energy-producing companies.
The Rise Of Wind Energy In The Country
The wind is a renewable and free power source. According to statistics, the US currently produces enough wind power to provide electricity to more than 33 million American homes. Wind energy has experienced tremendous growth over the past decade. Since 2010, wind power production has grown by more than three times. In 2010, the country generated 2% of its power from wind. However, in 2021, the number has gone up, and the country currently generates 7% of its electricity from wind. Similar to solar power, wind power generation technology has also improved. Wind turbines have become more efficient. The power generation capability of wind turbines has doubled over the last ten years.
The Atlantic Coast gives the nation’s wind power production a tremendous boost thanks to the area’s high wind volume. However, the geographical location can provide the West Coast with four times the current electricity it uses. The country has exponential potential for wind power production. According to renewable energy experts, the country can produce ten times its electricity requirements from wind power. Wind power potential is so great that Texas alone could produce twice the country’s electric needs.
The Rise Of Electric Vehicles In The US
Electric vehicles contribute greatly to the use of renewable energy. They reduce the dependency on fossil fuels. The rise of electric vehicles in the US and worldwide has been steadfast. The industry has produced and sold over one million electric cars in the US alone in the last twenty or so years. In 2019, the nation sold 330,000 electric cars. If the country produces more electric vehicles, the carbon footprint will reduce since fewer carbon dioxide emissions will be reduced.
Despite The Rise, The Renewable Energy Sector has an Untapped Potential
The solar, wind, geothermal, and other forms of renewable energy are expanding exponentially. The price of renewable energy is dropping, and technology is becoming more efficient. From 2010 to 2019, the cost of generating solar and wind power reduced by 3 to 16 percent every year. According to experts, the cost of renewable energy will continue to decrease in the foreseeable future. By 2050, solar power could be among the cheapest power sources. The experts also predict that battery storage capabilities will only increase in the future.
Technological advancements also have a significant impact on the rise of renewable energy. In 2007, the highest power-producing wind turbine could only generate 6MW. However, in 2020, General Motors launched a wind turbine that can produce twice the power. The power the wind turbine generates can provide electricity to sixteen-thousand homes. The rate of renewable energy consumption is also dropping, thanks to technologically advanced gadgets. For example, LED bulbs use a fraction of incandescent bulbs' power. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory states that the country’s renewable energy sources are more than enough to power the nation.
However, it is upon the federal and state governments to ensure the country realizes this potential. The federal and state governments should put policies that will encourage the adoption of clean, renewable energy.
Limitations of Renewable Energy Sources
Renewable energy sources are critical in helping reduce carbon emissions. According to statistics, seventy-five percent of carbon emissions result from machinery that requires fossil fuel to operate. However, as efficient and clean as renewable energy is, it also has some downsides. For one, the weather is not always reliable. On some days, the sun is out and shining brightly. On other days it is all cloudy. The wind also does not blow constantly.
Some days are calm, so there is no wind to drive the turbines. The solution is to find a way to integrate the power from the renewable source into the electric grid. The balancing act calls upon the government and other stakeholders to develop ingenious ways to store the energy from nature. Some solutions to mitigate the shortcomings of natural power sources include sector integration, efficient heating and cooling systems, and various other ingenious solutions.
For example, sector integration means having a smart system that balances energy production and consumption. The system ensures that any excess energy is stored. This stored energy is released to the grid when there is no sun or wind to provide power. The integrated system ensures energy distribution is not interrupted. Sector integration makes it easier to run the setup. It also increases the efficiency of the system.
Call A Solar Installation Company Near Me
The use of renewable energy is on the rise in California, thanks to a few key factors. First, the government has implemented initiatives that make renewable energy readily available. Secondly, renewable energy is clean and environmentally friendly. Natural power sources do not produce harmful chemicals. The sooner you embrace renewable energy, the sooner the environment will reverse the adverse effect of greenhouse gases.
Therefore, embracing green energy is the way to go. Not only for the government, but for you too as an individual. At Sun Solar Electric, we are a world-class solar power installation company offering services to homeowners in Northern California and the Bay Area. If you want to add solar power to your home, do not hesitate to contact us at 707-658-2157.