Renewable and Non-renewable Energy LEO ANTWIS

Just to show how different countries think about energy

There are two types of energy sources, renewable and non-renewable

Let's start with renewable energy

Renewable energy is energy from nature (such as wind or the sea (kinetic)) which is transferred into an electrical pathway.

Types of renewable energy:

  • Geothermal - Taking heat from the ground, think volcanoes
  • Solar - Solar panels also knowns as a photovoltaic cell
  • Wind - Think of putting wind turbines in the sea.
  • Hydroelectricity - a massive dam holds water, this then flows and spins a turbine and then a generator.
  • Tidal - We can use the sea's vertical movement (tides) to generate power
  • Biomass - This is burning farm waste

THE PRO'S

  • It's free (apart from the set-up and occasional maintenance). Seriously, imagine having a house which can be completely reliant on renewable energy whatever the weather - no more bills!
  • Taking the energy doesn't add to greenhouses gases
  • One day we will use all the fossil fuels and will have to rely on renewable energy (or nuclear)
  • If you're creative they can take up little space (solar panels on roofs)
  • They're pretty cool - The Mahindra e2o is completely self reliant.
  • They will never run out
  • They can be used where there is no connection to the national grid
  • They can be very adaptive. People in Iceland have used the volcanoes (geothermal) to heat there water

THE CON'S

  • NIMBY's will complain and potentially protest against renewable energy sources
  • They can be noisy (people have claimed that wind turbines disturb there sleep)
  • They don't produce enough electricity to meet demand.
  • They have been known to disrupt wildlife. e.g hydroelectricity dams are massive so consequently some habitats may be destroyed.
  • They can take up a lot of space (hydroelectricity dams)
  • They are unreliable, so when it's cloudy solar panels don't work and if it's windy the wind turbines won't work
  • Although poo powered biomass is innovative and pretty incredible, it smells bad.

NIMBY = not in my back yard. Someone who may or may not be pro renewable energy but will not stand to look at it either way because it's ugly... *cough*coal*cough*nuclear*cough*fracking*

Yep, poo power.
Non-renewable energy

There are 4 types of non-renewable energy:

  • Oil
  • Natural gas (fracking)
  • Coal (mining)
  • Nuclear (The big towers which ruin the countryside)

Non-renewable energy is something which we burn with the exception of nuclear.

Fossil fuels are formed from the decomposition of organic material. This is exposed for to heat and pressure which forms the fuel. The process lasts around 300 million years, to put that into perspective, that's before the dinosaurs and homo sapiens have only been around for about 200,000 years. We have only been around for 0.067% of the time it takes to make fossil fuels... so we ain't going to be making any more!

It is predicted that oil and natural gases will run out around 2060 - 2070 but coal will last about double that time. Still, 2060 is not a long way away.

Around 80 percent of nuclear power stations are light water reactors. An artificial chain reaction is made inside a container of water. This turns the water into steam which then powers a turbine then a generator.

THE PRO'S

  • Non-renewable energy is so much more time efficient.
  • A lot more power is made.
  • Fossil fuels are reliable and always meet demand
  • There not just for electricity, a large amount of homes still use gas hobs and ovens and most cars are run on petrol or diesel

THE CON'S

  • Adding to greenhouse gases is heating up our climate which will be disastrous in years to come.
  • Accidents can happen, for instance: Chernobyl - Doctors estimated that 150,000 abortions were performed to healthy babies just because of the fear of radiation (radiophobia)
  • Non-renewable sources are pretty ugly, e.g cooling towers, coal mining
  • It's not very nice to smell the polluted air
  • It kills the wildlife. -nuclear power plants have to dispose of the waste. "Low-level and intermediate wastes are buried close to the surface." Lets say Jeff the squirrel is digging to hide his stash of acorns and then stumbles across some nuclear waste.
Now Jeff looks like this.
The ugly cooling towers.

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