It’s no secret that oil and other traditional fossil fuels won’t last forever, and alternative energy may be the only hope. As a society, we’ve relied on these fuels for many, many years. When people think about oil and fossil fuels, they often think of cars and other vehicles, but oil is often a crucial component of heating individual people’s homes as well.
Limited resources like oil and coal are often used in many areas to provide electricity for local populations as well. Energy Smart PTY Ltd So the Earth’s limited, dwindling, natural resources may be warming your home as well as giving it power and light.
The possibility for a spike in the cost of oil only increases as we use up more and more of the Earth’s supply. The process that crates oil can often take millions of years, so it’s not like we’re going to end up with more any time soon
Combine the dwindling supply of fossil fuels with the fact that much of the world’s oil supply is tied to the troubled Middle East, and you have a recipe for a spiking oil cost crisis with little warning.
As a result of these facts, many home owners have turned to alternative energy sources. Examples of some renewable energy alternatives to oil include solar, wind, hydro, and many others. These resources are often referred to as “renewable” because sunlight, flowing water, and wind aren’t resources that are going to run out any time soon, unlike oil.
Many homeowners have tuned to the installation of solar panels and wind structures as a means of providing energy for the household beyond the traditional methods. This effort saves money in the long run, though there is a cost of installation Electricity Rates will not be a concern anymore.
But the long run is what will likely matter, after all. This is true not just on a local scale regarding the increasing cost of oil, but also on a world-wide scale, as the environmental toll taken by the use of fossil fuels continues to accelerate world-wide problems like pollution and global warming.
It is quite clear therefore, that we need to increase our production and use of renewable energy. This energy can be produced from many sources, however our choice for home production is restricted to solar and wind power. The potential of solar and wind energy production in the U.S. is still largely unexploited. As you can see from the graph, we can and must do more.
Alternative Energy Solutions: Solar
The cost and difficulty of building solar panels to provide electricity for a house will depend a lot on the particular variables involved. On average, American homes use about 800 Kilowatts Hours per month of electricity.
While this estimate might be useful for talking about the energy costs in general terms, it’s actually really important that the first thing you do before any kind of solar installation takes place, is get an accurate measurement of how much energy you use per month.
The last thing someone trying to do a solar alternative energy installation wants to do is underestimate their energy requirements and end up with a system that severely limits what they can do. The energy needs of a particular family can vary widely based on a number of different factors.
For example, the size and age of your family members could matter. Young children won’t need as much energy in terms of what they are using for appliances throughout the day as they might when they are older. Alternative energy sources like solar power are the kind of thing you really need to calculate before hand.
This is something you can do by looking at your monthly electricity bill. Generally, you’ll be able to see how much electricity you use in KWH (Kilowatt Hours) the amount that costs you is also smoothing you can take note of, when trying to calculate out whether the alternative energy solar solution will work out for you in terms of money in the long run. If the amount is pretty high, then it can help to find more efficient utilities, such as newer brands of refrigerators that may use less power. Many modern appliances have extra measures focused on reducing the amount of energy it takes to make them run for this reason. It is interesting to note how the energy needs of a typical American family have increased over time, despite the great improvement in the efficiency of appliances. And also the expenditure obviously increased at the same time.
The particular area you live in also makes a big difference as far as cost is concerned. When it comes to solar energy, sunnier is obviously better. The more sun your particular area gets, the fewer panels you will need to harness the same amount of energy. For example, sunny areas like in the desert may get as many as 6 or 7 peak hours of sun every day, on average. Gloomier locales that are more set by clouds may get as few as 3 hours of usable energy in a day. The following picture is an example of the detailed maps available at the NREL website containing all the information concerning the solar radiation.
Another decision to make as far as solar installation goes is whether to do it yourself or hire someone. Many people who have some understanding of the system do it themselves, and are able to cut up to a quarter off of the cost of installation of alternative energy solar panels. But it’s possible to lose efficiency as well if the solar panels aren’t set perfectly right on your house’s roof to collect the maximum amount of energy, for example.
Other Renewable Energy Solutions
Another alternative energy solution is wind power. When thinking about trying different alternative energy approaches to home electricity, it’s a good idea to take stock of what type of natural resource is most abundant wherever you are. If there is a lot of sun in your area, then alternative energy solar power is certainly a good bet.
But if you happen to live some place with an average amount of sun, but it’s very windy, then wind electricity might be the way to go. Places that are windy tend to have open space, and this is something you will definitely need for wind power.
Apartments or cramped houses are bad places for wind energy. You will need nice open fields to make the big wind mills that can catch and harness the wind most effectively.
Since alternative energy solutions like wind power are relatively new to the energy arena, legal considerations for wind turbines are important to note. You can usually look this up, and it can be different depending on the local area.
It is for these reasons and others that alternative energy is increasingly becoming an important, viable, and cost effective solution for the rising cost of oil.