Do Renewables Make a Difference?

Renewable energy is defined as “energy from a source that is not depleted when used.” Solar power, hydropower, and wind power are just three of the many renewable energy sources available to us.

There is a great deal of skepticism concerning how valuable renewable energy is. Being an Environmental Science & Policy major, I am frequently asked questions like; “Why does this matter?” or “How much of a difference can this one action make?”

With people becoming more aware of global climate change, countries are working towards become more renewable and sustainable. This means switching to more Earth-friendly means of energy and development. The Guardian recently published an article titled Surge in renewable energy stalls world greenhouse gas emissions.

It goes on to describe how China and the United States are actively working on decreasing the demand for coal, oil, and other non-renewable energy sources. Within the article, it is also stated that around 90% of new electricity generated in 2015 was due to renewable resources.

Now for the question; why does this matter? Well, without the surge of renewables, there could have been up to 2 more tons of greenhouse gases polluting our atmosphere. This would raise global temperature even more, leading to an increase in climate change effects.

Image credits: from The Guardian article (hyperlinked above)


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