Renewable forms of energy, such as sunlight, wind, and gravity, can improve welfare, trade balances, and income worldwide, leading to a more prosperous, healthy, and happy life for everyone. Here, we look in more detail at how a move to renewable energy can help your health and happiness. 

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What is renewable energy?

In the energy industry, renewable energy refers to energy obtained from natural resources that can be replenished in less than a human life while not depleting the planet’s resources. They have the advantage of being available in one form or another almost everywhere because of the abundance of natural resources such as sunshine, wind, rain, tides, waves, biomass, and thermal energy stored in the earth’s crust. They are essentially inexhaustible in terms of resources. In addition, and perhaps more importantly, they have no impact on the climate or the ecosystem.

Carbon-based fuels such as oil, coal, and natural gas, on the other hand, are only available in finite amounts due to their nature. Therefore, they will eventually run out if we keep harvesting them at the same rate. This is because even though natural processes create them, they do not refill at the same rate we people consume them.

In the modern era, the world continues to rely significantly on fossil fuels and even continues to subsidize their use. And yet, the pollution they create has reached unprecedented levels, ranging from climate-damaging greenhouse gases to health-endangering particle pollution. In addition, when something goes wrong, as happened, for example, with the Deepwater Horizon oil platform explosion in 2010, the ramifications are severe.

Since 2011, renewable energy has grown at a higher rate than all other sources of energy combined. As a result, renewable energy saw another record-breaking year in 2020, with installed electricity capacity increasing by more than 256 gigatonnes (GW) — the most significant growth in the industry’s history. Renewable energy already accounts for more than 29 percent of our electrical generation, and this percentage is steadily increasing.

What are the key benefits of using renewable energy?

All energy sources have an impact on our environment, just as any other human activity does. Renewable energy is not an exception to this norm, and each source has its unique set of exchanges that must be considered. However, the benefits of using renewable energy over fossil fuels are undeniable: from reduced water and land use to less air and water pollution, less wildlife and habitat loss, and no or lower greenhouse gas emissions, there is no doubt about it.

Furthermore, the fact that they are local and decentralized and that technology is developing produce significant benefits for the economy and the people.

Renewable energy produces no or minimal greenhouse gas emissions. 

Carbon dioxide emissions from the combustion of fossil fuels for energy are a substantial contributor to global warming since they emit a significant amount of greenhouse gases. However, even when considering the entire life cycle of the technologies, most renewable energy sources produce little to no emissions. This is excellent news for our climate.

Renewable energy sources emit no or minimal air pollution. That is what we need to hear for our health. 

The use of fossil fuels for road transportation, industrial activity, electricity generation, and the open burning of trash in many cities is increasing worldwide, contributing to increased levels of air pollution. In addition, using charcoal and wood for heating and cooking is common in developing countries, which leads to poor indoor air quality in many of these places. Cities are essentially being suffocated by particles and other air pollutants originating from fossil fuels. According to research conducted by the World Health Organization, their presence over metropolitan skies is responsible for millions of preventable deaths and billions of dollars in medical bills each and every year.

Renewable energy, such as those provided by a solar panel company, has a cheap cost of production. This is beneficial in terms of keeping energy prices at a reasonable level. However, when there is global turmoil and instability, it is generally accompanied by rising energy prices and restricted access to resources. Because renewable energy is produced locally, it is less affected by sociopolitical upheavals, price surges, and supply chain interruptions than traditional energy sources like coal and natural gas.

Most renewable energy investments are spent on materials and labor to construct and maintain the facilities rather than on expensive energy imports. It is common practice for renewable energy investors to invest within a single continent, frequently in the same country and even in the same town. This means that the money that people spend on their energy bills stays in their communities, where it can be used to create jobs and support the local economy.

The use of renewable energy increases the resilience of the energy system. This is critical in order to avoid power shortages. Renewable energy sources enable urban energy infrastructures to become more self-sufficient and less reliant on external sources and networks. Investing in renewable energy allows businesses and industries to prevent disruptions, as well as to increase their tolerance to the weather-related impacts of climate change.

Renewable energy is available to everyone who wants it. That is beneficial to the development of the country. Renewable energy sources are the most cost-effective source of new power production technology in many parts of the world, and their costs are continuing to fall. Renewable energy, particularly in developing countries’ cities, is the only option to ensure that all residents, particularly those living in urban slums and informal settlements, as well as those living in suburban and peri-urban areas, have access to electricity.

Renewable energy is a safe source of energy. That is beneficial to the stability of the system.

Due to the changing nature of the energy markets as well as geopolitical unpredictability, energy security and infrastructure resilience have risen to the top of the priority list for many national energy agendas. Energy markets all across the world, from the European Union and the United States to Egypt and India, are concerned about the security of their energy supplies.

Renewable energy is a democratic energy source. That is a positive step toward acceptance.

In recent years, the number of community energy projects that use renewable energy sources has increased dramatically in a variety of locations throughout the world. In spite of the fact that community energy is most often linked with Northern European countries like Denmark and Germany, such projects are also being implemented in countries throughout the world such as Thailand, Japan, and Canada. This development demonstrates that democracy is a key cause of the transition to renewable energy sources.

Can renewable energy be used in a variety of applications?

In all energy sectors, including power generation and thermal comfort in buildings, as well as industry and transportation, renewable energy can be utilised.

Thermal comfort in buildings is important. A few examples of renewable energy in buildings include solar thermal water heaters and biomass boilers. Other examples include heat pumps and natural cooling. It is essential to reduce the energy consumption of buildings and industry if we are to achieve a transition to a renewable-based energy system. As a result, a comprehensive policy approach to renewable energy and energy efficiency is required at all levels.

Renewable energy can also be used for industrial heating and cooling processes, such as those in the food processing and pulp and paper industries. It is possible to address the needs of high-heat intensive industrial processes in the iron and steel and chemical industries by producing hydrogen with renewable electricity.