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Alternative Energy Sources Pros and Cons

The Various Pros and Cons of Alternative Energy Sources

As fears grow over the depletion of conventional sources of energy, people have started weighing the pros and cons of investing in alternative energy resources of energy. The following article presents forth the pros and cons of these sources.
Arjun Kulkarni
Last Updated: Jul 25, 2017
Alternative energy sources are those, which can be used in tandem with the conventional ones to power mechanical devices. But the rate at which the latter are getting depleting, there will be no "alternative" but to use them. Hence, it is time that we seriously looked at the energy crisis, and decided the resources that are effective enough to fulfill the increasing demand of energy.
Alternative Energy Sources List
The most popular and commonly used sources are:
  • Biomass
  • Solar Energy
  • Wind Energy
  • Hydro Energy
  • Tidal Energy
  • Geothermal Energy
  • Renewable: These sources will not get depleted in the near future, and can be used in again and again. Hence, sources like solar and wind energy are good ones to be used for cars and homes.
  • Clean and Green: They do not form residual matter, which will harm the environment in the long run. Alternative energy and global warming are said to be inversely proportion. The present day car fuels lead to the emission of a lot of poisonous gases and exhausts, which are bad for the environment. As opposed to this, vehicles powered by solar energy do not lead to the formation any kind of harmful waste matter.
  • Free Source: Excluding the costs of production, these sources need not be purchased. The ones like sunlight, wind, and water require only an initial cost for installation, thereafter which, they are free. This can be contrasted with the increasing price energy, which the companies are paying to purchase coal and gas.
  • High Supply: The relevance of this point may vary based on your location. If you are located in a region with a lot of sunlight, then you will have a lot of solar energy. Likewise, if you set up a windmill in a windy area, you will receive a constant supply of that energy. Hence, once you decide on a location and set-up a production facility, you need not worry about any supply limitation.
  • High Setup Costs: this is a major deterrent or hurdle for establishing or harnessing the alternative sources of energy. For example, in case of dam construction for a hydro-powered plant, the relocation of the residents, and actual building process involves very high costs. Production of energy using tidal waves too is quite a costly affair.
  • Storage and Transportation: cost of both of these aspects in ase of these sources is very high. Though windmills and hydro-electric power plants are getting more and more sophisticated, other sources have a long way to go.
  • Unreliablilty: These sources depend largely on naturally occurring factors. For example, if it doesn't rain enough, the hydro-electric plant's production levels will be hampered. Similarly, without enough sunlight, it might not be possible to generate solar energy as efficiently as needed.
  • Inefficiency: Currently, the alternative sources are not as efficient as the conventional ones. The technology available today is not sophisticated enough to ensure that they can completely overthrow the reign of exhaustible energy resources. The proof of this is the hybrid car.
There is no doubt that alternative energy is the way to the future, but we have to give ourselves time in order to develop ways to fight the cons, before we can get establish these sources as the mainstream technologies.