Renewable energy, also scientifically referred to as clean energy, is defined as a power source that is created from natural elements that are continually replenished. Two of the most common renewable energy sources are wind and sunlight. However, while sun and wind are the most common and possibly the most popular, there are other relatively surprising clean energy sources emerging such as:
Now on display in Las Vegas, kinetic streetlights are powered by the footsteps of the people who walk past them. Engineers place special padding beneath the city’s sidewalks, and the motion created by pedestrians transforms into the lights that ultimately illuminate the area.
But we also see shorter term investment opportunities:
To some, this may sound disgusting. Others might believe it is ludicrous to think of dung as a viable renewable energy source. Large farms are often fairly far away from strong grids and electrical infrastructure. Large cattle, pork or dairy farms extract the biogas from dung and use it as fuel to generate electricity and the thermal heat associated to the generation to power cooling facilities or reduce energy needs from boilers. As an easy to remember fact, dung from 1.000 dairy cows generate aprox. one MW of electricity during the 8.760 hours of the year. After delivering the biogas, dung transforms into a great fertilizer.
Can we reindustrialize midwestern farming regions?
These solutions also offer significant investment opportunities and support the creation of highly innovative and competitive companies. Large regions like the Midwest in the USA have seen traditional companies disappear. Attracting R&D and Capital to create a new and competitive environment can help local communities that are running out of jobs for their young people. High Schools, University and Community Colleges have to modernize what they teach their students.
Companies like Energy to Market in Mexico already buy significant amounts of electricity generated with biogas and sell the electricity at very competitive prices to large consumers.
This single-celled organism is often found in abundance in various water sources because it only needs the sun, carbon dioxide and water to sustain itself. That said, researchers believe that minute amounts of algae can produce enough oil for more than 5,000 gallons of fuel.
Magma is a highly heated mixture of liquid and solid forms typically found under the earth’s surface. When the substance forces its way through the earth’s crust, volcanic eruptions can and often do occur. Icelandic scientists are using the product as an electricity source. Researchers have estimated that magma has the potential to produce as much as ten times more electricity than other more conventional sources.
The natural warmth garnered from body heat has been transformed into a renewable energy source. A team of Swedish researchers discovered that the emitted warmth of a quarter-million subway riders proved sufficient to comfortably heat hot water tanks in an office building adjacent to the subway station.