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Renewable Energy Overview

What is Renewable Energy?

Renewable energy resources are virtually inexhaustible in duration but limited in the amount of energy that is available per unit of time. Renewable energy resources include biomass, hydropower, geothermal, solar, wind, ocean thermal, wave action, and tidal action. In 1850, about 90% of the energy consumed in the United States was from renewable energy resources. Now the United States is heavily reliant on the non-renewable fossil fuels: coal, natural gas, and oil.

Renewable energy consumption decreased by about 1% between 2006 and 2007, contributing 7% of the Nation’s total energy demand, and 8.4% of total U.S. electricity generation in 2007. Even so, there are many other ways in which countries can help limit the negative impact which non-renewable energy use can have on the environment. Many people regularly recycle domestic waste, for example, and more people are slowly beginning to recycle products such as Mobile Phones and their Sim cards, and even items such as clothing. Having said this, using renewable energy remains one of the most significant changes which we can make in order to lessen the strain on other non-renewable energy resources.

The United States Is Second in Renewable Electricity Production

China leads the world in total renewable energy consumption for electricity production due to its recent massive additions to hydroelectric production, followed closely by the United States, Canada, and Brazil. However, the United States consumes the most non-hydro renewable energy for the production of electricity. The United States consumes twice as much non-hydro renewable energy for electricity production as Germany and more than three times as much as Japan.

What Are The Various Sources of Renewable Energy?




Solar Energy

  • Solar Thermal Systems for Heating Buildings and Water
  • Solar Thermal-Electric Power Plants
  • Photovoltaic Systems

Biomass Energy

  • Wood
  • Municipal
  • Solid Waste and Biogas Biofuels (Includes ethanol)