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Solutions to the 21st Century Energy Issues - Essay Example

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The paper "Solutions to the 21st Century Energy Issues" highlights that nuclear energy can be used to make electricity. But first, the energy must be released. It can be released from atoms in two ways: nuclear fusion and nuclear fission. In nuclear fusion, energy is released when atoms…
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Solutions to the 21st Century Energy Issues
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Download file to see previous pages In view of environmental concerns, it may prove undesirable to use only fossil fuels to meet the ever-growing demands for energy. Moreover, reserves of natural gas and oil are limited. As their reserves are localized in certain geographical areas, this might lead to conflicts and wars between countries. It is therefore of utmost importance to expand the contribution of alternatives to fossil fuel combustion during the next decades. With scientists issuing warnings that deposits of fossil fuels will not last us beyond another century, it is time we woke up and took note of this crisis. Conventional forms of fuel like coal and petroleum will be exhausted in a few decades' time. These are not renewable and need certain climatic conditions and several years to be formed again.
Solar energy is a source of power that uses energy from the sun. The term solar energy is used more specifically to describe the utilization of this energy through human endeavor. It is a renewable energy source that has been used in many traditional technologies for centuries. It is also in widespread use where other power supplies are absent, such as in remote locations and in space. The primary forms of solar energy are heat and light. Secondary forms and effects include photosynthesis, wind, the Gulf Stream, the hydrologic cycle, fossil fuels and electricity1.
The total solar energy available to the earth is approximately 3850 zettajoules (ZJ) per year (89,000 TW), which is far more than what we need for human consumption. Solar energy is harnessed and stored in the form of solar cells and can be used to heat up rooms, offices, geysers and a lot of other needs of humans.
3.2 Wind Energy
Wind power is the conversion of wind energy into more useful forms, such as electricity, using wind turbines. At the end of 2006, worldwide capacity of wind-powered generators was 73.9 gigawatts; although it currently produces just over 1% of worldwide electricity use, it accounts for approximately 20% of electricity use in Denmark, 9% in Spain, and 7% in Germany. Globally, wind power generation more than quadrupled between 2000 and 2006.
Most modern wind power is generated in the form of electricity by converting the rotation of turbine blades into electrical current by means of an electrical generator. In windmills (a much older technology), wind energy is used to turn mechanical machinery to do physical work, such as crushing grain or pumping water. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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