Deployment of renewable energy is expanding all over the world. There is high competition between alternative land uses, and conflicts over limited land are likely to emerge between biodiversity conservation and expanded deployment of renewable energy.
Dr Andrea Santangeli in the University of Helsinki, Finland, and his colleagues in the UK have explored global expansion of land use for renewable energies versus biodiversity protection. They discovered that the conflicts and opportunities largely depend on the type of energy at stake, with bioenergy strongly conflicting with biodiversity protection while generating only limited power at a global level.
Conversely, solar energy and, to a lower degree, wind energy, may provide relatively large power supplies with minimal impacts on biodiversity.
“We found that using a very limited amount of land for generating energy from the sun can yield large amounts of power without impacting the best areas for biodiversity protection. However, this result only holds when restrictions on energy storage and transport are largely ignored, which is unrealistic in the short term. Indeed, these findings highlight a major opportunity when political will and improved technologies make it possible to harvest renewable energy without such restrictions,” says Andrea Santangeli.
Santangeli and colleagues also highlight that in the near future renewable energy most likely will not be able to make a very large contribution towards our total global energy consumption. So, other forms of energy still need to be considered.
- Andrea Santangeli, Tuuli Toivonen, Federico Montesino Pouzols, Mark Pogson, Astley Hastings, Pete Smith, Atte Moilanen. Global change synergies and trade-offs between renewable energy and biodiversity. GCB Bioenergy, 2015; DOI: 10.1111/gcbb.12299
There are many benefits of using renewable energy in India. We know that we will have to rely on it for our future needs. Using them ensures that we keep our environment clean, and our earth is green and safe place for life. On the other hand, non-renewable sources or fossil fuels are not sustainable. They are harmful for the environment because of the way they are processed. With the extremely limited reserves of gas & coal available to the mankind, use of renewable energy seems the only way out.
Renewable energy has come to stay. Many countries in Europe, America & Asia has taken large strides in making renewable energy tied to tax benefits. Some States in India are also ahead. But sadly, we need to do much more.
Possibly, some of us do not understand what is renewable energy is & why is it becoming increasingly important for us to embrace this technology. Maybe a few points here under will motivate the reader to look for more.
It is a check on pollution – When you are using renewable energy in India, you are keeping a control on the spread of pollution. Types of renewable energy such as solar or wind, would not cause any pollution. There would be no emission of harmful, poisonous gases in the environment. On the other hand, fossil fuels produce a lot of pollution. So, better opt to choose wind or solar energy if you want to conserve your environment. .
Availability – There is lack of availability of non renewable energy today. When there is less availability, it is obvious that the cost of this energy would be on the rise. If more of fossil fuels get consumed, we need to pay more for our utility bill. Thus in order to reduce our mid-long term cost, we should use more of renewable source of energy, which is freely available in nearly all parts of our country. This is going to help our future generation too.
Low maintenance cost – When you use renewable energy for your needs, you are saving money in the mid-long run. Though, you need to spend initially on their installation, but later you get the return on investment fairly quickly. Besides, it requires less cost on maintenance. On the other hand, use of fossil fuels is an expensive affair. You need to spend heavily on their maintenance and working.
No imports needed- A great advantage for any user is easy accessibility to technology. With easy availability of renewable energy, its acquisition is not tied to the various legal & statutory laws of the country.
Renewable energy is sustainable, safe & reliable- Unlike other forms of energy, renewable energy is completely safe without any threat of depletion.
Looking at the above benefits, you too should start using more of renewable energy in your work. The NGOs are working hard to bring awareness about renewable energy in India. Today, it does not look like a choice but our dire need for us to quickly adopt renewable energy in our walks of life. With more expected to come from the government, we can see happy & bright days ahead.