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When you hear someone talking about climate change, what is the first thing you think? Most people immediately think about global warming and the environmental controversy about who is to blame for this so-called “global warming”.
Climate change, however, is believed to come from two main sources. There is a cycle the planet goes through which is altered by natural occurrences such as volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, changes in the Earth’s orbit, solar events, the ocean’s current, and more. Then there are the actions we take which contribute to climate change and alter the greenhouse gas effect here on Earth. Every time you use the energy provided by the local utility company, fill up at the gas station, heat your home, or any number of other activities which produce carbon dioxide, you are contributing to the greenhouse gas effect.
The question then becomes, what can we do to combat climate change? Well, there are many steps which can be taken, but in this post I thought it would be good to highlight a number of alternative energies which could help us combat our contribution to climate change.
1) Solar Energy: The sun continues to provide us with a natural form of energy day after day. The problem becomes in the capture and processing of this resource. Currently only about 1% of the electricity in the U.S. is powered by solar.
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2) Wind Energy: The wind is another natural and renewable resource we can tap into. This study was done to look into the stability of wind energy in the face of global warming.
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3) Tidal Energy: Tidal energy is another alternative energy which has the potential for becoming a major player in the renewable energy arena. Why? Because the tides will keep coming in and going out. Recently Scotland made a major move to boost subsidies in favor of tidal-power.
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4) Wave Power: Like tidal power, wave power is another source of alternative energy which more governments and countries are investing in, in order to meet their renewable energy goals. In fact, the UK is determined to be the ‘Rolls Royce’ of marine energy (wave/tidal).
5) Plastic Conversion: Per reports, existing technologies could be used to convert all the non-recyclable plastics, that are tossed into U.S. landfills each year, into energy. Those plastics alone could power over 5 million homes a year. Just think what could be done with all the other waste.
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Now, let’s face facts here. Even if a person invests in a variety of alternative energies to power their home, vehicle, working environment and other activities in their life, they are still in some way or form contributing to climate change. This is because there are a variety of factors which cause man-made climate change. Additionally, regardless of our efforts, the Earth’s natural cycle will continue to happen.
Our contributions to climate change, however, can be lessened and we can take steps to help lower CO2 emissions below that critical level of 350 ppm. In my opinion, it’s all about deciding how you want to live and how you want your children, and their children to live. What are your views on the subject?