Renewable Energy Sources Essay

1360 Words 6 Pages
Every day the United States uses massive amounts of energy. Only about 8% of the United States’ energy needs are met by renewable energy sources. That means that eventually 92% of the nation’s energy resources will run out. Recently this problem has been brought into the public’s eye and the American people’s attention has shifted to renewable and “green” energy resources. President Jimmy Carter (1977) said that “[w]ith the exception of preventing war, this (the energy crisis) is the greatest challenge our country will face during our life time” (p. 418). There are many proposed solutions to this problem and wind and solar energy are just two renewable energy sources that could be used. North and South Dakota along with Texas have
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Both wind and solar energy technologies are extremely environmentally friendly. There are sometimes freak accidents in which birds or bats are killed by the rotating blades on a wind turbine but for the most part the only “pollution” one could complain about would be that the farms are not aesthetically pleasing. Compared to non-renewable fuels the emissions and waste produced from wind and solar energy is practically nonexistent. These new energy sources can reduce carbon dioxide emissions and provide energy that can be renewed.
Some could argue that the price is high for a reason; the wind turbines could be inefficient, prone to breaking, or have some other hidden malady. The main problem with wind turbines is the fact that it needs to be windy for them to work. But looking at solar cells quickly reveals the same type of problem; they are useless without the sun. So the question becomes what is there naturally more of- wind or sun? The answer depends on location. Certain areas are known for being windy and certain areas are known to be dry and hot. Most of the time sunny and windy conditions do not exist together. If an area has little sun, it is windy, if it is hot and sunny all the time, it usually does not have a lot of wind. In the United States the best places for solar panels are in the desert states like California, Arizona, and New Mexico. As for turbines, the flatter Midwest states produce the highest wind speeds. There is also the problem of