In the current decade, more than 85% of all primary energy-consumption sources in the world are fossil fuels, which consist of petroleum (34%), coal (28%), and natural gas (23%). These sources are considered non-renewable resources because they take millions of years to form, and current reserves are being depleted at a much faster rate than new ones being made.
While the United States hold less than 5% of the world’s population, they use up more than a quarter of the world’s supply of fossil fuels, triggering a warning to the world that the environment can no longer tolerate the negative effects of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and other greenhouse gases. Initiatives like the Paris agreement look to reduce emissions in order to keep the rise in global warming under control.
Countries like Costa Rica have been supporting renewable resources for the last five years, and it powers over 98% of all their electricity. Also, with the advance of technology and science, people have found other sources that are both sustainable and renewable. Here are some examples:
Solar Power: Solar panels produce renewable energy while securing low utility rates. They use the energy from the Sun to produce enough energy to power a whole household by themselves!
Wind Turbines: These turbines convert the wind’s kinetic energy into electrical energy and can rotate either on a horizontal or vertical axis. Wind has the lowest greenhouse gas emissions and most favorable social impact compared to other energy converters.
Power from Tides: The immense power of waves can be captured to generate electricity, desalinate water or pumping water. It is estimated that the total energy that could be generated by waves would account for 33% of the total amount of energy consumed annually by the US.
The future looks uncertain in regards to fossil fuels, but anything can happen. What other technologies can you think of are or will be capable of replacing fossil fuels and providing a sustainable future for our beautiful planet?