Renewable and Non-renewable Energy Sources. The Pros and Cons

Non renewable energy sources are fossil fuels and nuclear fuel. The three main fossil fuels are coal oil and natural gases. When fossil fuels are burned they release thermal energy. This then can be turned into electricity by a generator.
Renewable energy sources are energy resources that can be renewed whilst being used some of the renewable energy sources are: solar, wind, hydroelectricity, biofuel, water waves, geothermal and tides.

Pros for Non renewable energy.

  • They provide most of the energy that is used worldwide.
  • They can be used to power petrol and diesel cars because the fuel is created from oil (a fossil fuel.)
  • Non-renewables such as coal are used to power steam trains to boil the water to make the steam.
  • Non-renewables are the most widely used fuel in the UK to heat houses. For example coal can be used in a fire to make the internal energy (heat) to increase. Or natural gases can be used to heat water that goes into radiators.
  • Non-renewable energy is reliable and there is enough existing to make sure that power plants can still use them to create electricity.
  • The running costs of power plants aren't very expensive and it's a cost effective way to create energy.

Cons for Non-renewable energy

  • Non-renewable energy resources will all run out one day.
  • All types of non-renewable energy pollute and cause damage to the environment.
  • They pollute the world because when coal oil and gases are burned they emit carbon dioxide into the atmosphere which increases the green house effect and leads to global warming.
  • When coal and oil is burned it can emit sulfur dioxide which can cause acid rain.
  • When the resources like coal and oil are discovered and extracted it can spoil the view and leave areas of land unsafe to be around.
  • There can be oil spillages which cause environmental problems which can harm sea mammals and birds.
  • When nuclear power is used the nuclear waste is very dangerous and a high risk to get rid of.
  • Nuclear power is quite expensive and there is a risk of a catastrophe.
These are some of the resources of non-renewable energy.

Pros for Renewable energy.

  • Renewable energy will last forever and can be renewed whilst being used.
  • Renewable energy doesn't do as much damage as non-renewable energy.
  • Vehicles can be powered by biofuel which is a type of renewable energy.
  • Renewable energy can be used to heat up buildings for example a geothermal heat pump, solar water heaters or bio fuel turned into electricity can be used to heat rooms.
  • Bio fuels can be burned to make electricity whilst being carbon neutral.
  • Wind turbines, solar panels, hydro electric power, wave power, geothermal power and tidal barrages do not create pollution.
  • Wind turbines have no fuel costs and are cheep to run. There's also no damage done to the area where the wind turbine is, if you moved it all would be back to normal.
  • Solar cells are used to charge batteries for example in calculators and watches. Solar power is a reliable source especially in sunny countries. Once solar cells have been fitted they are cheep to use and the energy is free.
  • Geothermal power is free, reliable and doesn't have many environmental problems, it can be used to generate electricity and to heat up buildings.
  • Hydro-electric power can supply enough energy for the increasing demand for electricity there are no fuel costs and its cheep to run.
  • Wave power is cheep to use and has no fuel cost.
  • Tidal barrages are reliable because the tide comes in and out throughout the day there are no fuel costs and its cheep to use.

Cons for renewable energy

  • They don't supply much energy and some of them rely on the weather to work.
  • Wind turbines spoil the view and take up a lot of space because so many are needed to create a lot of energy. They are also noisy and are annoying to people who live near them. Also when the wind stops the wind turbine will stop creating energy.
  • Solar power can only be used in the day because there is no sunlight at night and in cloudy countries they will make less energy. Also there isn't enough created to be able to keep up with the demand for more electricity.
  • Geothermal power costs a lot to build compared to the amount of energy that is created by it and there is also not many places where a power plant can be built.
  • Hydro-electric power effects the environment because it involves a dam being built to make a whole valley be filled with water which could effect the habitat of some species of animals and also effect where people live because their village could be in the valley. Also if there is a drought the water would dry up and it would not be able to create energy and the valley doesn't look nice when the water dries up.
  • Wave power needs a lot of wave powered turbines to create enough energy. It also disturbs the sea bed, spoils the view and puts people in boats at risk and is unreliable because the waves die out when the wind dies down.
  • Tidal barrages can stop boats from getting through, spoils the view and changes the habitats for animals. Also the height of the tide can effect the amount of energy created.
  • Building new renewable power plants is very expensive and the research to create better sources of renewable energy takes up time and is also very expensive.
  • A lot of renewable sources are quite expensive to have fitted.
These are some of the renewable energy sources.


Created with images by PDPhotos - "fire embers hot" • Lance Cheung - "090624-F-203" • Lateral Support - "coal" • tylerserif - "fossil fuel rainbows." • 526663 - "coal fired power plant nuclear reactors nuclear" • Free Grunge Textures - - "Nuclear Grunge Symbol" • Wayne National Forest - "Wayne National Forest Solar Panel Construction" • USFWS Headquarters - "Wind turbines" • Deni Williams - "Usina Hidroelétrica Itaipu Binacional / Itaipu Dam" • Mike Cattell - "River Rance, Dinan, Brittany, France"

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