At present, the vast majority of the world’s energy resources come from the burning and manipulation of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels include oil and coal; essentially, generating electricity from already-formed substances found on earth. Most of us have seen gigantic oil rigs towering on the horizon and coal mining is still an important industry for many countries; it is from these industries we get most of our energy and electricity.
However, there is a problem. Fossil fuels such as oil and coal are not sustainable resources; in essence, one day, they will run out. Oil and coal generate over thousands – if not tens of thousands – of years, and humans have been tapping these resources ever since the Industrial Revolutions of the 19th century. While it may sound like scare mongering, one day these fuels will cease to exist.
Various estimates can be found on how much fossil fuel is left, though most scientists agree we have mined over the ‘half way’ point. This is means that the Earth only has around 40% of its total supply of fossil fuels left to give, and it would take millennia to create more naturally.
Therefore, the search for renewable and sustainable energy has become pressing. Various options are being presented, most of which capitalize on the free natural resources of the planet we live on. Wind and solar power are increasingly spoken of as the natural alternatives to fossil fuels, while tidal and water power are also viable alternatives. Whichever method is chosen as the way forward for energy generation, they will need to both viable and sustainable so they can meet the world’s increasing demand for energy.