The feasibility of utilizing renewable energy resources in a commercial facility can be determined by the quality and quantity of available resources. Governmental resource assessments are not always accurate, so private feasibility studies are more effective at assessing commercial viability. Quality and quantity affect the energy input of a generation facility and the effective capacity of the unit. For example, geothermal resource development requires production equipment, which impacts the installed cost and per-kilowatt-hour cost of power delivered.
Examples of renewable energy sources
There are many different types of renewable energy resources, including hydropower, wind power, solar power, and geothermal energy. These energy sources are natural and recurrent processes. The use of renewable energy sources is the best alternative to fossil fuels and their associated emissions, as they are infinitely replenishable. In addition, burning fossil fuels releases harmful gases into the atmosphere that contribute to global warming. This makes it imperative to find alternative energy sources.
One of the most well-known forms of wind power uses the different temperatures of the earth’s surface to generate mechanical power. Wind turbines are often used to pump water for livestock. Hydroelectric energy uses the force of flowing water to spin turbines that convert energy into mechanical power and electricity. The power from these systems can also be used to activate mechanical devices. Some examples of renewable energy sources are described below:
Cost-benefit analysis of renewable energy sources
For example, in an energy efficiency study, the Iranian organization of new energies has compared the costs of renewable power generation to fossilized power. This study incorporated society’s costs of power generation and the sensitivity of finished costs. In an attempt to attract private sector investors, the researcher suggested a guarantee of power purchase. In the long run, this study aims to put renewable power more into the Iranian energy basket.
The book also presents a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis of renewable power generation in Cyprus. The study also considers social costs associated with the diffusion of renewable electricity. Overall, the book provides a clear case study for policy makers to consider the economic viability of renewable energy sources. It outlines a cost-benefit analysis methodology for small-scale renewable power generation. The authors’ findings suggest that the use of renewable energy technologies reduces greenhouse gas emissions while avoiding some social costs.
Impact on the grid
Renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind, are increasingly being integrated into the electricity system. This shift in energy source requires new grid infrastructure and investments. However, these resources can pose significant risks to the grid if they are not managed properly. For example, high-quality renewable energy resources often lie far away from existing transmission networks, so it is essential to develop new grid technologies to facilitate increased energy use from these sources. Moreover, grid operators must take measures to limit the over-production of renewable energy systems, as this can cause significant damage to the network.
The impact of renewable energy sources on the grid was examined by the Joint Global Change Research Institute (JGI) and PNNL, a partnership between the DOE and PNNL. While the findings of the study are useful for determining the impact of renewables, they may be different for each country. In Argentina, for example, a wind farm could be part of a plan for the country to offset hydroelectricity losses in the event of climate change.
Challenges to sustainability of renewable energy sources
While clean energy is the fastest-growing source of energy worldwide, its ability to meet current demand is not yet at par with that of renewable sources. In fact, renewable energy has only reached about 50% of global capacity. As a result, many urban centers haven’t reached the point of utilizing renewables as a sustainable energy source. A number of issues need to be addressed before this trend can truly take off, including the rate-of-conversion issue and limiting the size of renewable energy sources.
The main challenge facing renewable energy is to encourage widespread adoption of renewable technologies and make them a large part of the global energy mix. Spain is taking the lead in this sector, and wind energy has proven its massive potential. But solar energy has a high price tag and must overcome technological difficulties to be a dominant source of renewable energy. In the meantime, developing countries must be encouraged to adopt renewable technologies, but their adoption is hampered by several factors.