The United States is moving in the right direction towards a 100% self sustained country but what issues need to be addressed before we become dependent on another country. Electric cars depend on batteries that are supplied to us by China but that may be one of the only issues that could be considered a drawback in our effort to eliminate our insatiable appetite for oil.
Solar Energy Benefits and Drawbacks
Solar energy is purest form of 100% made in the United States energy. The energy produced by solar energy sub stations is growing throughout the country. Recently the Pocono Raceway installed a solar field that now powers the entire facility.
Another benefit of solar power is the relative ease of creating a power source at the point of use. Examples of this are: solar powered billboards, solar powered street lights, solar powered generators and solar powered homes with solar panels installed on their rooftops.
In California there is construction underway on what will be the largest solar field in the country. It is called the Ivanpah Solar Generation Plant and will be constructed on the California border with Nevada in Ivanpah. Construction began last month and will put 1000 people to work on the construction and 86 people will be employed full time. The drawbacks of solar power are currently the expense and the possible need to add power lines.
Wind Power Benefits and Drawbacks
Wind turbines used to generate power are becoming popular in the Midwest and in California. There are being installed in windy corridors throughout the United States and now Europe is installing many wind farms also. The construction of these wind farms is creating new jobs in construction and in the maintenance of the win turbines.
The drawbacks of wind turbines to generate electricity are their dependence on rare earth elements. Once we wean ourselves off of oil we would then be dependent on China to supply us with rare earth elements. China holds 97% of the market in rare earth elements and the United States shut down their production of rare earth elements. Another drawback is birds flying into the turbines and causing damage.
Natural Gas for Vehicles Benefits and Drawbacks
T Boone Pickens is the driving force to get the United States to convert it’s commercial fleets of 18 wheel diesel trucks to natural gas. This is a noble cause and one that could reduce America’s dependence on foreign oil in half in one fell swoop. The cost to convert the tractor trailers to natural gas would be relatively inexpensive but construction of refueling units across the nations highways could take time.
The drawbacks of natural gas are tough to ignore. The drilling for new natural gas wells is a complicated task that involves an inordinate amount of water. The process of fracking, hydraulic fracturing of the earth’s crust, is also used in oil exploration. Once a drill is bore into the earth, water and chemicals are pumped at high pressure into the well. HBO produced a movie titled “Gas Land” that discusses the process in depth.
Electric Cars Benefits and Drawbacks
The willingness of the worlds auto manufacturers to create renewable energy vehicles has grown as a number one priority. Nissan has produced the 100% electric Leaf and every car manufacturer has their own version of an electric/gas hybrid. The Ford EV Focus and Chevy Volt are the two electric cars made and manufactured in the United States.
The benefits of the electric car are obvious. They emit zero emissions and many companies and businesses are installing recharging stations. The drawbacks for electric cars in the short term is their limited range. None of th current electric cars on the market can travel more than 300 miles on a single charge. The long term drawback for electric cares is that they are dependent on rare earth elements for their batteries.
Kinetic Energy Benefits and Drawbacks
The newest form of green energy is the use of kinetic energy. Kinetic energy uses speed bumps or speed humps to harness the kinetic power displaced by vehicles as they slow down to travel over the speed bump or speed hump. The technology is already being used in the United Kingdom in parking lots of a chain of grocery stores and in New Jersey in the drive thru of a Burger King. The drawback of the kinetic energy speed bumps is the cost and possible maintenance issues that could arise in the transmission process.
More from Associated Content:
Mojave Desert in Southwest Could Supply Solar Power to Entire United States
Green Sports Venues: Can All Sporting Events Be 100% Sustainable by 2030?
Renewable Energy and Drive to Make Nevada Self Sufficient New Priority
www.humanevents.com –China’s ‘Rare Earth’ Monopoly by Robert Maginnis
www.awea.org–wind power generation information