Types of Renewable Sources of Energy and How They Apply To the Homeowner
As the current societal awareness of environmental impacts by greenhouse gas producing methods of energy production continues to mount, many people are looking for ways to offset their carbon footprint by investing in green energy. Green energy is a generic term meant to refer to the many methods of energy production that are more environmentally friendly than the current mass production. If you are wondering what those methods of production are, and whether or not you might be able to take advantage of them, then this article is for you.
Perhaps the most widely used and easily available method of green energy production is the solar panel. Solar panels are clusters of photo voltaic cells that produce electricity when they are hit by photons of sun light. The solar panel is easily installed on your roof or lawn and can plug right into your home. The great thing is that it not only provides you with energy for you to use, it also provides energy to the grid. In most areas of the country, you can sell the excess energy you produce to your local utility company. You should look into this if you live in a very sunny area like the southwest US.
Wind power is only slightly less known than solar panels. This is the production of energy through the use of a windmill. In this method of green energy production, the spinning windmill is in itself an electricity generator. Just like the turbines in coal power plants, the spinning blades of the windmill generate electricity. You can purchase small models for your home and should look into this if you live in a windy area.
Hydroelectric power is the type of green energy that is generated through the use of running water. Most dams in the country have some type of hydroelectric generating capacity. If you have a stream on your property, you might be able to use this type of energy production, but most likely you won’t be able to take advantage of this green energy.
Geothermal power is being used in many new construction projects to heat and cool homes. By using the constant temperature beneath the earth’s surface, ground coupled heat pumps can keep your house at a constant temperature as well. This means that in summer time you can cool your house to around seventy degrees, and in the winter time you can heat your home to around seventy degrees without using much electricity at all. Your home can be retrofitted to use this type of green energy and you might look into it if you have very high heating and cooling bills throughout the year.
There are many types of renewable energy, and some of these green energy production methods can be incorporated in your home. Remember that although there is usually a high cost outlay associated with green energy, typically there are state and federal rebate programs that help offset the cost. Look into these programs to see if green energy doesn’t make financial sense for you.