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Sustainable energy systems - Essay Example

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In larger scales, solar thermal technology harnesses enough energy for us in generating energy equivalent to geothermal plants. Solar is a clean and renewable energy implying that unlike fossil fuels it neither pollutes the environment nor gets depleted. Its use is therefore more economical owing to the minimal environmental effects. The United Kingdom uses different forms of fossil energy in the form of petroleum products. Such fuels have been in use for years all through the history of the country in running companies, automobiles and in small-scale domestic uses. Fossil fuels are convenient owing to the fact that they are portable and considerately cheaper. Developed countries including the United Kingdom constitute the greatest users of the fossil fuels therefore the greatest polluters of the environment. The phrase sustainable energy refers to the production of sufficient energy at affordable costs. The affordability of energy in this context does not only apply to the cost of production but also to the environmental consequences in the course of the use of the energy resource in a particular country. The United Kingdom currently consumes an average of 300TWh annually. ...
From the above brief discussion, the two forms of energy become evident: renewable energy and nonrenewable energy. Renewable energy refers to the different energy that comes from replenished sources. This refers to natural sources of energy, most of which are never depleted; they come from natural sources which continually get recycled. Among the most common sources of this energy include rain, sunlight, wind, tidal waves and geothermal heat among many others. Non-renewable energy, on the other hand, comes from depleted source key among which are fossils thereby resulting in the term fossil fuels. Fossil fuels form because of a process referred to as anaerobic decomposition of living organisms. This process takes millions of years and the resultant fuels contain a lot of carbon. The most common forms of such energy include natural gas, petroleum and coal (BOYLE, 2012: pg 31). This therefore implies that despite their convenience and cheaper cost of production, fossil fuels are not convenient and the country should determine a way of reducing their usage and encourage the consumption of more cost effective energies. Renewable energy is not depleted, they are commonly referred to as clean energy owing to the fact that they do not involve the combustion of any substance and therefore do not result in by products such as carbon as is the case with fossil fuels. This explains that while fossil fuels pollute the environment through the production of carbon, clean energy does not owing to the fact that they do not produce any carbon compounds as the by products. Additionally, machines that run on fossil fuels produce a lot of noise owing to the combustion ...Show more

Summary

Sustainable Energy Systems Name: Institution: Introduction Solar thermal energy is a technology used to harness solar energy for the production of thermal energy. This refers to the use of sun to heat either air or water. The use of the mechanism is increasing in the developed world with the United Kingdom showing increasing preference to the technology in order to cut down costs of using both fossil fuels and hydroelectric power in heating either water or air for domestic and commercial purposes…
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