The ongoing Covid-19 Pandemic has made mankind realize that the sun, the moon, the earth, and nature, as a whole, can survive on its own. When the human beings were confined to their homes, when the countless automobiles were shut inside garages, when numerous factories were not releasing their waste in water bodies, nature was breathing. It was healing.
The worldwide lockdown made considerable changes to the environment. The air of most polluted cities of the world took a leap from the ‘worst’ air quality to ‘good’ air quality.Himalayan peaks were visible from Delhi. The sky was once again blue; the birds were once again visible on that blue sky.
Here comes the question – Is the environment suffering because of human beings? The answer to this question is not a simple ‘Yes’ or ‘No’, but a descriptive one. When a human being is made to work for twenty hours a day, it is quite evident that he or she will fall ill. The reason being that capacity to endure is surpassed over here. The same example can act as a mirror in the case of the environment. The resources of nature are not utilized, but rather over utilized which disrupts the system altogether.
“Giving back to society” is considered to be a moral obligation, but the question is –Shouldn’t this be applied in the case of nature? Yes, it should. Here, comes the role of RENEWABLE ENERGY. Renewable Energy, as the name suggests refers to a form of energy collected from natural resources. The different types of Renewable Energy are –
- Solar Energy – collected from sun.
- Wind Energy – collected from wind.
- Geothermal Energy – collected from the energy of the Earth.
- Hydropower – collected from flowing water like rivers and streams.
- Biomass – collected from organic materials like agricultural wastes, firewood, manure, sewage etc.
- Tidal or Wave Energy – collected from the Oceans.
BENEFITS OF USING RENEWABLE ENERGY
The most important benefit of using Renewable Energy is ‘Environmental Benefit’. The energy produced from Non-Renewable Sources has serious environmental degradation effects. It causes damage to the environment by producing naturally occurring greenhouse gases like methane,carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and water vapor; and fluorinated greenhouse gases like hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, sulfur hexafluoride and nitrogen trifluoride. On the other hand, the energy obtained from natural resources does not have any environmental harm; rather it helps in reducing different types of pollution.
The places where Renewable Energy is consumed witness better air and water quality, less soil erosion and acid rain.
The second benefit of using Renewable Energy is ‘Economic Benefit’. The use of Renewable Energy reduces the dependence on fossil fuels which are depleting at a great pace due to overuse.
Different regions of the world are rich in different types of resources, for example, the Arabian Gulf is rich in Oil; Australia is rich in Uranium and Gold; India has one of the largest reserves of Coal and so on. But, every place in the world has access to natural resources like sunlight, water, wind etc. Therefore, a country which is incapable of performing in the world market can produce Renewable Energy and fulfill its energy demands.
As more and more Renewable Energy plants will be established, more and more employment opportunities will be available for people. This will also benefit the local labor and the people who are unwilling to migrate to other places for work.
Since, the energy produced from Renewable Resources costs less so the consumers will also get the energy at lower prices.
The third benefit of using Renewable Energy is ‘Health Benefit’. As per the data collected by National Geographic, ‘almost 2.5 million people die every year because of indoor or outdoor air pollution’. On the other hand, almost 2 billion people drink water from contaminated sources.This leads to various diarrheal diseases which lead to the death of almost 5 lakh people yearly.From the facts given, it is quite evident that reliance on Renewable Energy will leads to better
lifestyle, healthy people and less deaths.
Abraham Lincoln (1809-65), the 16 th President of the United States said, “As yet, the wind is untamed and unharnessed force; and quite possibly one of the greatest discoveries hereafter to be made, will be the taming, and harnessing of it.” This is a statement made in the nineteenth century when the world was witnessing the onset of the Industrial Revolution which had England as its centre, but its effects could be witnessed globally. Indubitably, the mankind has made considerable developments in every field from that time till now. As per Lincoln’s statement, the greatest discovery has already been made i.e. energy is being produced from wind. But, the question is – Are we using it effectively? Are we really making the full use of this discovery? Is it serving the purpose it is discovered for? Not just Wind Energy, but every form of Renewable Energy is a great discovery made by man, but it can only serve its purpose when it produces good results.
Another great figure in history, ‘the Scientists of Scientists’, Albert Einstein (1879-1955) said,“We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive”. Though the twentieth century did not undergo the plight of environmental degradation that the world is into today, but the way resources were exploited it was quite predictable that miserable times were to come. Einstein, through his statement, advises mankind to step back and work out the right way to use resources.
It is better late than never. As human beings with understanding and reasons, it is our responsibility to look into the affairs of the environment. If one out of ten people take the oath of clinging onto the Renewable sources of Energy, the impact will be significant and profound.