Alternative Energy

Many people know that fossil fuels are scarce and need to be conserved, but while there are plenty of alternative energy sources, no one is using them.  The reason everyone loves fossil fuels is because of their high-energy density. Biological materials that come from the Carboniferous period were exposed to heat pressure for millions of years and turned into fossil fuels.  These fossil fuels are constantly being mined and extracted requiring further safety, environmental and cost concerns.  

First of all, energy sources such as solar, thermal, wind, or hydraulic energy, will not be able to replace fossil fuels. These types of energy, while excellent at creating electricity, are inapt to replace fossil fuel.  A lot of our fossil fuels are used in transportation and finding a replacement for petroleum-based fuel is difficult. At this point, you may be thinking, “Wait a minute aren’t there electric cars?”  The answer to this question is yes, of course, there are electric cars.  Still, it would be an amazing feat to have all cars powered by electricity.  Electric cars are generally very expensive and difficult to manufacture, making it hard to be used by everyone.  Even if you had enough money to buy a reasonable electric car you may choose a petroleum car.  Electric powered cars run on batteries which have to be recharged once depleted or the car won’t start; this is the problem electric car companies face.  The best electric cars can go two hundred miles per charge, yet these cars are super expensive due to the complex engine and battery.  Recharging the battery takes four to twenty hours, which, if on a long car trip, makes a petroleum car the better option.  

Secondly, many of the alternative fuels that work in petroleum based cars are not easily available. There are many types of alternative fuels some of the most effective are biodiesel, bioalcohol, hydrogen, and vegetable oil.  You could use these fuels in your car but they are not conventionally sold. There is no high demand for alternate fuels and so commercial gas stations choose not to stock them.  Alternative fuels do not provide a profit as large as petroleum fuels, thus, it is a popular choice to sell fossil fuels. Although, this is not to say that alternative fuels are not sold at all.  There are some places where you are able to purchase cleaner fuels than petroleum but the providers are few.  Some people decide to modify their engine to accept vegetable oil, and simply ask restaurants for used fry oil. To be able to use alternative fuels it requires action.

Thirdly, no one uses alternative fuels because petroleum based fuels are simply more convenient. In America convenience is everything, from our food to our transportation if it isn’t fast and easy it isn’t readily accepted.  This is a large part of why we refuse to use alternative fuels, it’s just harder.  To use these types of green fuels you have to actively seek them.  Until you can see biodiesels at a shell station many people won’t even consider it. While it is true that some people are unaware that alternative fuels exist, most people just choose not to use them. There are also those who believe it’s better to use petroleum to extend the health and durability of the car.

No one chooses to use alternative fuels and so we will continue using petroleum.  As a result of this, fossil fuels may become a depleted resource sooner than necessary. The amount of fossil fuels that is exhausted in transportation could be better used in creating other petroleum products which we need.  Not only would the use of alternate fuels create an additional supply of fossil fuels, but it would also decrease our CO2 emissions by a substantial amount. Still regardless of where it comes from, environmental conservation takes action, and no one is willing to act.

0 Comment

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.