Why It Matters
International research organizations have agreed that climate change has been happening and is only getting worse. In recent years, we have already seen serious flooding, massive forest fires, hurricanes, and the extinction of species at an unprecedented rate. All of these are indirect results of climate change.
Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, and gas, have been our primary source of energy. However, in the past few decades, an overwhelming number of scientific discoveries have revealed that the use of such fossil fuels is one of the main causes of climate change. Usage of these fossil fuels leads to an increase in carbon gas emissions, which has ensued in increasing average global temperature and higher frequency of natural disasters. All this evidence suggests that in the long term, the climate will be permanently and significantly altered.
Renewable energy is power generated from naturally replenishing sources; the most common examples are wind, solar, hydroelectric, and geothermal energy. These are sources that can be harnessed multiple times because they rapidly “regenerate” themselves.
Unlike fossil fuels, renewable resources produce little to no carbon emission. This is even true when considering the manufacturing, installation, and operation of the machines that are needed to harness their power.
Cost has been the biggest concern among big companies and institutions. Although renewable energy was more expensive than fossil fuels in the past few decades, there has been a rapid decrease in cost of renewables and an increase in the cost of other power sources, and both trends are expected to continue into the near future.