The United States must look at the fact that the world is running out of oil. Our country must begin looking into alternative sources of energy to replace oil. Solar power is more efficient than other forms of energy, is cost effective, and is environmentally beneficial.The most promising new source of energy is solar power. “World oil production outside of the Middle East is predicted to peak in 2023; if Middle East oil is factored in, the estimated peak is 2040”.
“How Fast is the World Running out of Crude Oil by Umut Newbury found from the EBSCO Host database” states. With our world’s supply of oil becoming more scarce the Unites States must begin looking into new sources of energy. Solar Power is finally becoming astronomically more cost effective and in the near future it will be just as economical to produce electricity from solar power as it will from more traditional sources such as coal or natural gas. “Solar is on track to deliver electricity to residential users at a cost on par with natural gas and perhaps even coal within the next four to seven years”. The Cost of Solar Energy Will Soon Compare with the Cost of Coal by Mark Clayton found on the Gale Opposing Viewpoints database stated.
On the other side of things some think that solar power is too costly and the machinery is not effective enough to contend with the more current types of resources such as coal or oil. Statistics have shown that the use of solar power is growing and is expected to keep growing. In 2010 the capacity of solar power was only a thousand megawatts, but by 2015 it is expected to be at 10,000 megawatts.
Solar power has to become our main source of energy for future generations.Research has taken place that will allow solar power to be more efficient and make it easier for the solar panels to catch the sun’s energy. “The high efficiency, combined with gallium arsenide ability to perform at relatively high temperatures and in low light, means that the cells can produce two or three times more energy over a year than conventional silicon ones”. Finding a Solar Solution by David Rotman discovered on the EBSCO Host database stated. Multiple companies have made developments on solar panels so that the panels track the sun’s movement throughout the entire day compared to conventional solar panels that only capture the sun’s energy half of the day.
This improvement leads to a twenty-four to thirty-two percent increase in power generation. In addition, the fascinating idea being developed is solar powered satellites. The concept is basic, to have solar panels installed on satellites. “If successful, the project would make possible the construction of huge platforms from tens of thousands of small elements that can deliver remotely and affordably tens to thousands of megawatts using wireless power transmission to markets on Earth, as well as missions in space”. Satellite Would Beam Solar Power to Earth by Leonard David he explained.Solar power can only be collected during the day, so they are pretty much useless during the night. Technology is currently being advanced so that it will grant energy to be stored during the day and allow that energy to be used at night when it is most needed.
It does so by storing heat produced in the day with its 2,600 mirrored heliostats, in molten salts which reach temperatures of 500 degrees Celsius. The molten salt battery storage system can retain heat for 16 hours. Energy held in the salts is used to make steam, which turn turbines to generate electricity.Currently we now know the potential that solar power has and the latest research that has taken place to make it more efficient, we will now look at the environmental benefits that solar power has over other forms of power.
Compared to other forms of power generation, solar power is the cleanest and safest. One of the biggest advantages of solar power is that it produces very small amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and does not impact the environment in any significant way. Nuclear power on the other hand produces harmful radioactive waste that must be disposed of properly and is damaging to the environment. In addition hydroelectric dams may also seem to be ecologically safe, but in reality they are severely damaging river ecosystems they are damning. Lastly, solar power is far cleaner than coal which produces extremely high amounts of CO2 emissions and permanently damages ecosystems where the coal is mined.Solar power is the safest form of power generation in comparison with other forms such as nuclear power which could be potentially lethal if a meltdown were ever to occur. In addition coal burning plants has potential health risks and produces “Strong acids or their precursors that are present in inhaled particles and gases have been linked with respiratory effect in large- scale epidemiological studies.
A study of 13,000 children in 24 U.S. and Canadian cities found that strong acidity in particles were associated with increased episodes of bronchitis and reduced lung function and acid gases were associated with asthma and related symptoms in children”In today’s world of extremely high energy demand, It’s time for action and everyone of this world to accept the fact that an alternative form of energy must be discovered, and solar power is the most beneficial to unlocking that bright future. It would seem that solar power is the best choice in the field of alternative energy. It is the future of the planet’s energy needs and will do so cleanly and safely.