In the fight against climate change, the use of renewable energy is particularly relevant. Renewable energies are obtained from inexhaustible natural sources and generate clean electricity without contributing to climate change.
The different natural sources for generating clean energy include wind, sunlight, water, geothermal heat, tides, and various forms of biomass, all of which are inexhaustible and in constant renovation.
Most widespread renewable energies
Within all types of renewable energy, five stand out due to their high implementation:
Wind power is one of the most widespread renewable energies today. It harnesses the wind to produce electricity.
Photovoltaic solar energy directly transforms solar radiation into electricity thanks to the solar panels integrated by photovoltaic cells.
Solar thermal power, also called concentrated solar power, concentrates solar radiation with mirrors to heat a fluid that produces steam to generate electricity.
In the case of hydropower, the force of moving water is used to produce -and sometimes to store- clean electricity.
Finally, biomass uses organic matter as an energy source. This matter may be natural, residual or from energy crops.
Main benefits of renewable energies
Why are renewable energies the best option for a sustainable future? There are many reasons that make them the best choice:
- Environmental benefits: Renewable energies are clean sources that have a much smaller environmental impact than conventional energies.
- Long-lasting energy: Renewable energies are inexhaustible since they are constantly being replenished. In contrast with other types of conventional energies, which are finite and, therefore, can be depleted (e.g. oil and coal), renewable energies are our permanent ally.
- They create jobs and improve the economy: Most investments in renewable energies are spent on materials and the workforce to build and maintain facilities at a local level. This creates local jobs and grows the country's economy.
- Energy security: Renewable energies reduce a country's energy dependence, enhancing its self-sufficiency and sustaining major investments that would otherwise be used to pay for imports of non-renewable energy from other countries.