Last year climate change and renewable energy were a hot debate. The technology conference CES focused on eco-friendly products, Greta Thunberg was talked about widely, and it seems that for the first time people are really focused on creating new alternatives to fossil fuels. With the technology advancing quickly and the need for new methods of energy production becoming more important than ever, odd alternatives to produce green energy are popping up wherever you look. Below are some of these new ideas and innovations, some of which may change our lives forever and others that might not stick around.
Harnessing Harmful Gases
One way to produce energy while simultaneously facilitating the fight against climate change is to harness the harmful gases emitting into the atmosphere. For example, one of the biggest causes of climate change is methane and carbon dioxide released by cattle. It is possible to take these chemicals and convert them into energy we can use. This will also help reduce the amount of harmful gases in the environment.
A similar technique is to utilize the methane and CO2 emitted by lakes that are centered over reservoirs of these chemicals. While they can be quite dangerous for humans and animals to be around, the CO2 around these lakes can be used to produce renewable energy. This is something we as a society should focus on advancing—turning something bad into something good.
Another way to produce energy is to use the heat that isn’t being used. There are plenty of wacky tactics on how to do this, including utilizing the heat from crematoriums as well as the heat that gets trapped underground in subway tunnels. While people tend to make these efforts hyper-specific, it has more to do with the mindset overall according to the energy switch specialists MoneyPug. We need to utilize the heat that we are not currently putting to use. A lot of this energy could be cultivated and sent to our generators, helping everyone use less fossil fuels
Bio-solar is the process of harnessing the heat that is reflected by certain organisms. This could be from the sun itself or from a special photovoltaic that species like jellyfish emit. That’s right, jellyfish farms could be in our future to help produce energy. Researchers in Sweden discovered this and while it has yet to be used in any meaningful way, it could yield rewards.
Even weirder than bio-solar is solar wind. Now this isn’t necessarily solar and wind in its energy production, it is essentially harnessing energy from space itself. While right now this remains a theory, solar wind production could be a game-changer should it become a reality. According to some estimates, solar wind could produce billions of times more energy than humans need. Electricity would become free. It is still a utopian idea now, but if the future plays out in our favor we could live in a very sustainable, highly powered world.
While not all alternative lighting sources produce energy themselves, they can get rid of other electricity that used to be necessary. One out there idea was spawned in the Netherlands. Dutch scientists thought of an idea to replace street lighting with luminescent rocks. Covered with a photosensitive material, they glow in the dark at night. This is a part of the SMART highway initiative, which has the goal of making roads more environmentally friendly.
There are plenty of lights that have solar panels on them as well. Artificial plants can act as energy producers in the day and lights at night. The point is, alternative lighting could help us in our efforts to use less energy and produce more.
Some of these alternative energy producers may seem a little wacky, but it only takes one brilliant idea to change our world forever. Who knows where it may come from, but if we do our best to keep the innovative ideas flowing, we will be able to get out of this mess and live in a greener, more environmentally friendly world. With all of these alternative methods popping up, we have hope that the future won’t be as dark as it seems.