Renewable green energy is the hope of the future, for a world in which many of the poorer nations are finding it increasingly difficult to generate enough energy to meet their needs, and where the richer nations are facing the genuine prospect of running out of fossil fuels. The technology which will be used to produce fuel from sources which will never expire is still in its infancy, but already there have been many significant developments. The first solar panels have been successfully installed on the roofs of many private homes, and electric vehicles have been developed.
There are several different forms of renewable energy, but it is solar power which has tended to dominate the media. The potential for this energy source is virtually unlimited, as the sun will shine on most of the world for long enough to allow for easy electricity generation. The technique of using mirrors can also increase the strength of sunlight in areas where it is not so pronounced, and can allow for more electricity to be generated. It is the quality of the solar photovoltaic panels which largely determines how much electricity can be generated, and this technology is constantly improving.
Although solar power is often seen as the fuel of the future, it is by no means the only technology which has the potential to generate enough power to fuel entire nations. Indeed, there are some locations where the use of solar power will not be optimum due to climatic conditions. Many of those countries will have a more natural climate for taking advantage of wind power, which also has nearly unlimited potential. The greatest potential for using wind power comes from locating turbines offshore, making it an ideal choice for many northern locations which experience little sunlight, but which have extensive coastlines.
The application of these renewable green energy technologies will not be a fast process, as the technology is continually being improved. Waiting will always allow for a better unit to be put in place, yet there obviously must come a time when the construction takes place. We are now approaching the time when much of this technology is reaching a position of maturity, where any future improvements are likely to be minimal. In the case of wind power technology, it is also true that onshore installations provide much of the technological advance which will be needed for highly effective offshore installations.
The wholesale use of renewable technology is still a long way away, but already we are seeing significant progress. Technology which is being used on a small scale can often be used on a far wider level once it has been perfected and improved, and that is what is starting to happen now. Solar energy will only be realistic on a commercial scale if the infrastructure can be kept within manageable limits, which means that installations will need to be localized. Wind power also needs to be localized to a degree, but obviously there are many applications of offshore wind which cannot be localized.
Large scale commercial operations are not the only possible application of renewable green energy. There are many possibilities for solar technology to be used on a local, and even an individual scale. Wind power is less flexible, simply because of the environmental and noise aspects. There are many houses which, even today, have solar panels attached to the roof. As of now, it is not possible for a household with average use to generate all of the electricity it needs through solar panels, but this may happen in the future. It is possible for a household to generate a significant percentage of the fuel it needs, and even to sell electricity into the grid when it is not being used.
One of the features of renewable energy is that is works best when it is generated as needed, which is often not possible. This means that a system of storing the energy needs to be developed to make it fully useful. The best storage system we have is hydrogen, and this is already being used to good effect in commercial operations. There are now vehicles of every description, including buses and large trucks, which operate using hydrogen power. Their numbers are likely to increase greatly in the future.
Even though the possibilities of renewable green energy have been known for many years, there are still large sections of the population which do not fully understand the implications of it, or how it is likely to affect them. It is easier than ever to find out exactly what the possibilities are, but make sure you choose reliable websites to learn from. There are many who are just promoting their own special interests, and these give a biased viewpoint with few facts. It is impossible to accurately predict the future of renewable green energy.