All over the world countries are harvesting wind energy through the use of wind turbines which later convert the kinetic energy into mechanical energy. There are other sources of renewable energy such as solar, fossil fuel and geothermal which are also extensively being used. This has at some point given rise to several debates as to which is the better source of renewable energy. In most cases, wind energy always stands out as the best source of energy when compared to the other sources of renewable energy such as solar and fossil fuel. Although that is not to say that other types of renewable energy are bad. Companies that are using renewable energy as their source of energy, such as this flying fox park in Melbourne, are doing their part to the environment, no matter if they are using wind, solar or geothermal energy. Here are a few reasons why wind may be considered as a better source of renewable energy.
Wind Energy vs. Solar Energy
Since their invention wind and solar energy have been like rivals. Constantly being compared with reference to the level of efficiency. Basically, solar energy is tapped through the use of solar panels which trap the energy from the sun and converts it into electrical energy. The conversion takes place within seconds making it to be very reliable.
In as much as solar energy may be reliable wind energy still seems to be more superior. This is due to the fact that wind is available all day and night. This means that the wind turbines will be producing energy 24 hours a day without stopping provided there is sufficient wind. Solar energy, on the other hand, is somehow limited to day time operations when the sun is up. When the sun sets the solar panels have nothing to work with hence there will no energy produced. On places that does not consume too much electricity and/or may not have the required wind to be turned to energy, places like this adventure park in Victoria which relies on Solar energy is still fully operational and is not necessarily bad.
Nevertheless, several industries tend to rely on wind energy more than solar energy. The other benefit that wind energy has is that it is relatively cheaper compared to solar energy. It actually costs less to put up a wind turbine compared to buying a single pane of a solar panel. Wind energy is, therefore, more reliable, especially when used in production industries that require a constant supply of power.
Wind Energy vs. Fossil fuels
Fossil fuels are also on the list of resources of energy but the only difference is that they seem to be ranked at the bottom. When comparing wind energy to fossil fuels the best way to look at it is by observing the resulting effects that each may have to the environment. Power plants burn large amounts of fossil fuels in order to produce energy.
As a result of the combustion, dangerous gases such as CO2 are emitted into the atmosphere increasing the chances of global warming. In addition to this, the sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides produced during this process pose serious threats to the environment. This has made many people to develop several respiratory diseases which at times may be fatal. Although this side effect affects the people who lives near the fossil fuel plant the most, its effect that extends to the atmosphere and causing global problems, are the reasons why fossil fuel is not as popular as other sources of renewable energy.
On the other hand wind turbines do not produce any emissions during their operations. This makes them to be friendly to the environment hence recommended for large scale production of energy. The time taken to combust fossil fuels is also longer compared to the time a wind turbine takes to convert the kinetic energy into electricity. Burning of fossil fuels also leaves behind large heaps of residue which if not properly disposed of may interfere with the soil.
As you have seen wind energy is one of the best sources of renewable energy that is currently being used around the world. It is the best when compared to specific sources of renewable energy. When compared with certain types of renewable energy such as geothermal, however, wind energy may be at a disadvantage. Wind energy also has a few shortcomings that some people may not really be aware of.
These advantages include weather proof, base load, fantastic stability, and high thermal efficiency. The total installed capacity of geothermal electricity, however, is much less than wind and solar. The ability of this total solar PVs manufactured by China in the previous five years were equal to the total geothermal power installed in the entire world in the last one hundred years.
Having said that, it is imperative not to dismiss other ‘inferior’ sources of renewable energy mentioned in this list. All of them have a part to play, and it is important to remember that using renewable energy is still much better than using non-renewable sources of energy, such as the fossil fuel.