Energy production, consumption and distribution continues to become an ever more concerning issue as we venture further into the twenty-first century.
New and emerging technologies are radically changing the ways in which we consider our energy usage. Solutions, power plants and even levels of consumer influence are all set to transform in the years ahead.
From green and renewable sources to smart connectivity, there’s an abundance of reasons to be excited about the latest developments and what they mean for our future.
To aid you in understanding what’s in store for energy production, we’ve discussed and listed our predictions for the future of energy below.
Oil Consumption has grown leaps worldwide, over the last decade. So has gone up, the issue of global warming & its effects. Nations are coming together to fight the menace and curb the damage as much possible. And it was a major setback, when USA withdrew from the Paris Agreement deal, as the USA undoubtedly, leads the pack of Highest Petrol Consuming Economies.
But what astounds is the amount of gasoline, consumed by the USA alone in a day. Here is an infographic that shows some astonishing figures of the petrol consumed per day by the chief economies of the world.
Renewable energy technology, development and demand is becoming evermore popular as we move towards meeting the 2020 European Union deadline of increasing renewable energy consumption to 20% of consumption.
A number of things such as environmental impact, diminishing fossil fuel stocks and unpredictable oil prices have had impact the desire to increase the generation of renewable energy.
Between 2010 and 2014, renewable energy consumption of the top countries has effectively doubled from 168 million tons to 316 million tons of oil equivalent. RS Components latest graphic uses Energy Information Administration (EIA) data to reveal that hydropower is the most widely-used renewable power source with the global hydroelectric installed capacity exceeding 1,000GW.
What's the most popular source of renewable energy in your country? Take a look below to find out.
Annually the ACEEE (American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy) publishes a league table of results which charts countries efforts in terms of reducing their emissions. It was founded in 1980 and since then it aims to highlight the importance of such activities to the wider world.
Climate change in itself is a controversial topic. We saw at the COP 21 in Paris in 2015 that nations came together to sign the agreement to work on specific areas to reduce emissions which were seen to be contributing to climate change. Of course since then, the agreement has been dealt a severe blow with the withdrawal of the USA under President Trump. Whether that will eventually be turned around is anyone’s guess but in the meantime, efforts to be more environmentally aware can stretch to individual home owners because even small changes can make a difference to wider and more long term behaviours.
With the ACEEE’s chart of countries, it is interesting to see what countries “performed” best and what countries need further work. This infographic below from the people at Senator highlights that main points of the ACEEE report and examines the variables involved in the “scoring”. Check it out below.
When you’re shopping for new cars these days, you don’t just choose between petrol or diesel especially considering the new push to get rid of Diesel Cars! There are lots of alternative fuels available too. Most dealerships offer a spectrum of alternative fuel motors, including hybrid, electric and hydrogen-powered designs.
Check out this Infographic to find out what’s coming in the future of alternative fuels, showing where the automotive is headed!
Environmental awareness is getting higher and higher and many homeowners and businesses are searching for new ways to power their buildings. Luckily, today we have several sources of renewable energy that everyone is trying to incorporate into their lives. One of the most efficient sources certainly is the Sun and its energy. To be precise, solar energy is light and heat from the Sun, harnessed by a range of evolving technologies, such as solar thermal energy, photovoltaics, solar heating, and many other solar power systems.
Another reason why solar power systems are entering our homes and businesses is because of their benefits for the environment. Firstly, solar power reduces the emission of toxic gases into the air, thus reducing the pollution. Secondly, it reduces water pollution because it doesn’t use water to generate electricity. Thus it preserves the local water resources. Lastly, since sunlight is a renewable source of energy, solar power reduces the need for finite energy resources.
How does it work?
Solar power systems, like ones you can put on your roof, produce the needed power directly from the Sun. Sunlight is directly transformed into electricity by the solar cells situated in the panels. Each solar cell is made of silicon, combined with other materials in such a way that there are some missing electrons in one part of the cell, while in the other there are extra electrons. When the sunlight hits the cell, the extra electrons in the silicon are knocked by the photons in the light and they freely flow to the missing electron part of the cell. The flow that is created thus produces the electrical current that reaches the inverter, which transforms that current into usable electricity.
Grid-tied utility interconnected systems
These systems don’t require any batteries, because they are designed to contribute power back into the existing supply, and not for back-up power. Utility interconnected systems are perfect for residential and commercial buildings because they will pay for themselves throughout the years, because they will significantly lower the utility bills. By installing these solar power systems on your roof, you are powering your home with green power which will also reduce pollution in the environment. Since this is a convenient power solution for renewable energy, you have a vast variety of models to choose from, such as the 5kw solar systems, and supply your home with clean energy and lower bills. Utility interconnected systems are designed to lower the power demands from the utility or to sell power back to the utility, in some cases.
Standalone DC systems
These systems are usually a substitute for a utility power. They include solar charging modules, a charger regulator, storage batteries and controls. A smaller standalone DC system is a perfect replacement for noisy generators and kerosene lamps on a boat, recreational vehicle or a remote home. This system uses photovoltaic (PV) array to charge the batteries during the day and the battery supplies power where it is needed. The sizing will depend on the wattage of the loads and how often you are using them.
Standalone AC-DC systems
This system is similar to the previous one, but it uses DC to AC inverter. Additionally, this system can power the common appliances in your home, such as vacuum cleaner, computer, power tools, kitchen appliances and washing machines. DC to AC inverters are available with a variety of power outputs, ranging from 100 watts to 10 kilowatts. What is more, larger inverters can also serve as battery charges from a backup generator when you need more power than the solar module can supply.
We have to pay good attention to how we are using energy resources around us. Our environment is at stake, as well as our homes and health. Luckily, with massive advances in technology each year, we have the opportunity to utilize the renewable sources of energy, such as sunlight. This only results in green ways to power our homes and business buildings without leaving a trace in the environment.
Climate change as a topic is high on the agenda at present. Of course we have seen a lot of talk from the Trump administration and President Trump's opinion of the concept of climate change is widely documented across the Internet.
Despite scepticism, there are still many bodies who actively seek out countries to improve their energy efficiencies and not only does this mean their emissions are lowered, it can also result in lower output costs too.
One such body is the ACEEE who on a yearly basis publish a table with a chart of the most energy efficient countries according to their measurement variables.
The ACEEE is an American body and stands for American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy.
The guys at Senator Windows have created this Infographic below which details the 2016 results; it also pinpoints the variables and criteria set out by the ACEEE and certainly makes for interesting reading. Check it all out below.
Solar power has continued to advance in technology over the past few years. It has become more energy efficient cost effective than ever before, making solar technology affordable for households across the United States. Learn about the variety of benefits of going solar at home with this infographic from Renewable Energy Corporation.
The massive impact of fossil fuel heating systems on the environment continually draws a lot of worldwide attention. Considering that heating is one of the world’s highest energy consumption sources, there is more focus on making positive, sustainable changes to how it is produced. Green boiler technology is fast becoming a great solution for those seeking to reduce their carbon footprint.
With the options for green boilers increasing daily, questions are also being raised about their environmental impact. While green boilers are more energy efficient and acceptable as an alternative option for heating, they still contribute to global warming.
Different Types of Green Boilers
Today, there are two main types of green boilers used in homes and businesses: biomass boilers and condensing boilers. Each of these operates in completely different ways to reduce your carbon footprint.
Biomass boilers operate by burning wood and other renewable organic materials to produce heat. Unlike old wood burning stoves and fireplaces, modern biomass burning stoves are more efficient for water heating needs. There are automatic biomass boilers that control the amount of air and fuel that is used, making them even more efficient. To keep this boiler running, owners will need ample space to store the boiler, along with wood or logs for heating purposes.
Condensing boilers are fuelled by gas or oil. What makes these boilers different, is that they reuse heat from the initial burning process to preheat the water entering the boiler. Heat is recovered from the combustion process as water vapor is condensed into liquid, making the process more efficient. Unlike standard boilers, they come in various sizes that can fit into different locales and only require regular maintenance. Many buildings are switching from old gas boilers to condensing boilers due to their practicality.
Environmental Impact of Biomass Boilers
The burning of wood and other biomass fuels produces carbon dioxide and nitrogen dioxide emissions (CO2 and NO2). The carbon produced is usually the same amount as what is absorbed by a plant during its entire lifetime. While these emissions may be negligible, a faulty burning process in your boiler or a wrong setup may result in more emissions of carbon monoxide (CO), volatile organic gases, benzene, and other toxic substances.
With proper use of biomass boilers, the ash waste is usually harmless and can be used as compost. Ensuring that green boilers are serviced regularly and operate under the manufacturer's guidelines is crucial, so that emissions remain harmless and the boiler operates at optimal capacity.
Environmental Impact of Condensing Boilers
Considering that heating oil and natural gas from condensing boilers are fossil fuels, they still contribute to environmental pollution. Although the CO2 emissions are most common with gas boilers, a faulty heating system may further produce carbon monoxide and present a major health hazard. For oil boilers, there is potential water contamination with leakages as well as gas emissions. In recent years, heating oil used in green boilers has been blended with other biofuels, like biodiesel, to create a cleaner energy source.
Making the Switch to Green Boiler Technology
There is a lot that goes into deciding what type of boiler is needed in a building. When making a switch, different factors have to be considered, like the size of the boiler, its cost, energy efficiency rating, availability of heating fuel, and its impact on the environment. There is no doubt that green boiler technology saves energy and leaves a smaller environmental footprint than older boilers.
Why Is Green Boiler Technology Better?
Experts in the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning industry (HVAC) have to deal with constantly changing technology. With green technology popularity higher than ever, it's important to understand how new options are changing the industry and why this technology is the better option for heating.
- Reduced emissions—Green boilers make it easier for HVAC experts to abide by emission guidelines. These boilers are engineered under strict energy efficiency measures to protect both the end user and the environment.
- Highly efficient—Modern technology used for manufacturing green boilers helps minimize heat loss and improve heat transfer. That ensures that businesses get the most out of their boiler systems.
- Maximum fuel-cost savings—Green boilers use less fuel to do the same amount of work as old boilers; this is of huge benefit to many businesses. Eco-friendly boilers produce the same power while reducing spending on fuel over the long term.
- Smart design and innovation—With great improvements in design and engineering, modern boilers are produced smaller in size and developed with green technology in mind. That means less installation space in facilities and streamlined operation.
Is Green Boiler Technology Sustainable?
Just like other sustainable technologies, green boilers will remain a sustainable heating option. As more businesses opt for this technology, ensuring the reliability and efficiency of installed systems is a major priority for HVAC professionals. The boilers have to be regularly inspected and checked at least annually to ensure optimal efficiency.
The HVAC industry has quickly adapted to green technology, leading to the production of more efficient equipment that uses less energy. This is a major step for sustainable energy that helps protect the environment.
Kathleen Williams is an HVAC repair and installation expert and freelance writer from Orange County, CA. She has gained extensive experience and skills offering sustainable heating solutions to households and businesses in the area, working with one of the premier industrial boiler repair companies around.
Right now the world is still dependent on fossil fuels, because it is the most common energy source. But, since the usage of fossil fuels is the main cause of the greenhouse effect as well as global warming, there is an undeniable need to use alternative energy sources to generate electricity, such as solar power. And the benefits of using solar energy go way beyond reducing carbon emissions. So we, LEDwatcher team, offer you a look at the primary reasons why solar energy is so beneficial and important to sustainability and to humankind.
Solar power provides long-term energy certainty
Solar energy, unlike other energy sources, is basically inexhaustible. Fossil fuel reserves are running dangerously low, and soon they will dry up all together. But solar energy provides long-term energy certainty, because photo-voltaic cells collect sunlight to generate electricity. So the only resource used in electricity generation process with solar panels is sunlight, and, as long as the sun is shining, we will be able to produce clean, green energy from its light.
Solar energy is beneficial to the environment
The environmental impact from solar energy is also very low. First of all, it is considered the greenest and cleanest energy, because neither generation or consumption of it crates any carbon dioxide or other exhaust gases. This means that solar energy is in no way responsible for global warming or the greenhouse effect, which are two of the biggest environmental concerns right now. Second of all, solar energy is also considered much safer to humans and the environment, because it is lot easier to make and transport, without causing any natural disasters. Oil transportation can cause spillages from tankers, coal mining can lead to landslides in mines and oil drilling is prone to fires on drilling rings. But the only thing the mining of solar energy can cause is a bit of CO2 emission during the transportation of the solar panels. So solar power is still far less dangerous to the environment. Beside the positive impacts of solar energy on the environment and our life quality far outweigh the negative, making solar power the best alternative energy option.
Solar energy infrastructure prevents destruction of land and habitat
Usage of solar energy can also prevent destruction of land and habitat. Inevitably ecosystems are be destroyed to mine raw materials like fossil fuels or generate nuclear power. Trees are cut down, swamps are dried up and other habitats are destroyed to make room for factories, mines and power plants. But with solar farms, that is not the case. Yes, solar facilities still have to put up solar panels, which will cause loss of habitat, however, it is on far less destructive scale, because solar panels are simply placed on top of the land, not drilled into it or built above it. And since, many solar companies are striving to use only otherwise unusable and inhabitable land for their solar panel farms, like deserts or disaster sites, solar industry might even make use of land that previously was without a purpose.
Solar energy is a safe and clean alternative to other power sources
Solar energy can also fully replace other power sources and be a clean and safe energy alternative. Fossil and nuclear energy, which are two of the most common power sources right now, cause all kinds of environmental problems. Electricity generation from fossil fuels cause air pollution, which can result in acid rain, greenhouse effect and other serious changes in the environment. And nuclear power pollutes water and land, as well as poses a threat of another nuclear disaster. But solar power doesn’t cause any pollution, at least not in the electricity generation stage, so after the panels are manufactured and set up, they provide fully clean energy for years to come.
Solar power fights against climate change
Finally, solar power can also prevent global warming, which is probably the most dangerous environmental problem of this time. Global warming causes increase in the average temperature, and these changes lead to hurricanes, melting of polar ice caps, extinction of wildlife habitats, increasing of sea level among other problems. And, since carbon dioxide emissions, which are created by using fossil fuels as energy sources, are the main cause for global warming, solar energy could be the force that stops or at least slows down climate change and global warming.
The fight against pollution and climate change caused by the non-renewable energy industry is and will continue to be a difficult one, because people are not willing to sacrifice their old way of life in the name of sustainability. But solar power could really make a difference, because it is green, clean and sustainable source of energy. And with solar technologies evolving each year, solar power is also becoming more available to anyone, which is why everyone should consider to take a chance and try going solar.