With the Earth’s limited resources becoming harder to find and more expensive for consumers to afford, many homeowners have turned to the efficiency and environmentally friendly nature of an alternative energy supply. An alternative energy supply is any energy source that is derived from a renewable resource. Common sources for renewable energy are wind power, hydroelectric power, and solar power.
Some areas already have large plants that use alternative energy sources for entire communities. These may include wind energy sources where large fields are filled with large wind turbines. When the wind blows and moves the blades of each turbine or windmill, energy is conducted by generators. Since wind is unpredictable in nature, wind energy is generally used as a supplementary source and is used in conjunction with more widely available energy source.
Hydroelectricity works in a similar way, with turbines being turned by natural rushing water through a dam. This activates the generators and creates electricity. If the water source is large and powerful enough, this is another viable option for some communities.
Individuals can now acquire an alternative energy supply, or a combination of sources, for use in their homes. Small wind turbines can be purchased or built and connected to buildings to harness energy for use by families who live in areas where this option is feasible. Another common way to get connected with an alternative energy supply is by having solar panels installed.
Solar panels absorb the sun’s rays and convert them into electricity. Since the sun is a powerful energy source, and is widely available, solar energy is one of the most promising renewable energy sources. There are companies available who sell and install solar panels, usually on a building’s roof where sunlight is more readily captured. In many areas, solar energy may fully replace the need for more traditional energy sources.
Most communities now have access to solar energy, with new installation crews emerging everyday. It is also possible to order solar panels over the Internet to be installed by the homeowner himself. Wind turbine kits are also becoming available online for those who have the space and wind capacity necessary to harness wind energy.
The price of acquiring an alternative energy supply is often very high. Many families and business owners simply do not have the means to take advantage of this growing technology. Fortunately, many companies are lobbying to make solar, wind, and other alternative energy sources more affordable and readily available to the average consumer.