Energy from the Oceans

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The world's oceans may provide another viable source of renewable energy. Researchers have long been studying how to exploit the energy from ocean waves, tides, and ocean-based winds, which tend to be stronger than winds on land. Some experts predict that these ocean resources may eventually overtake solar energy as the most economical clean energy source. Ocean wind power is the most developed of these ocean energy technologies, and some countries are already investing in offshore wind systems. Denmark is the world leader so far, but in 2007 Britain announced plans to build thousands of turbines in the

North Sea, Irish Sea, and off the coast of Scotland—enough to supply almost half of the country's current electricity needs. Ocean turbines are typically huge—up to 850 feet high—and each can power up to eight thousand homes.

Wind power is intermittent, however, so fossil-fuel power stations would still be needed as a backup during windless days. Wind turbines have been criticized for killing birds and bats, but most experts believe the benefits of wind power far outweigh the environmental damage. Environmental groups are also working to develop wind systems that will be less likely to harm wildlife.

Oceans are becoming a valuable source for renewable energy.

Oceans are becoming a valuable source for renewable energy.

technology prevents them from being used to travel very far on a single charge. For this reason, hybrid vehicles containing both an electric battery-powered motor and a conventional gasoline engine now seem more promising. Already, many major car companies have begun to produce and market hybrid vehicles that achieve better mileage, and advancements over the next few decades could increase efficiency to fifty to eighty miles per gallon— more than twice that of today's average passenger car. This would significantly reduce emissions, but today hybrid cars are still relatively expensive.

One day, researchers hope that renewable hydrogen can be used to power fuel cells, a pollution-free technology that could efficiently convert the gas into electricity. Fuel cells could then be used instead of batteries to power zero-emission vehicles. For now, most of these transportation technologies, like renewable energy technologies, remain in the development phase.

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Getting Started With Solar

Getting Started With Solar

Do we really want the one thing that gives us its resources unconditionally to suffer even more than it is suffering now? Nature, is a part of our being from the earliest human days. We respect Nature and it gives us its bounty, but in the recent past greedy money hungry corporations have made us all so destructive, so wasteful.

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