September 27, 2021

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Will the impact of US energy generation change?

3 min read

The gas and oil industry is one of the most important in the world, with high revenue generation and high production levels of oil and natural gas to meet consumer energy needs. Government oil companies are responsible for the production of much of the oil and gas needed to meet the needs of the United States consumer and industries. Consumers can also look at a company audit through reviews to see how much they benefit from the gas and oil industry.

But, are they the only industry that can meet the demand of the consumers? Are there any alternatives? According to proponents of renewable energy sources, yes there are. It is important to know what the current alternatives are, and how we could benefit from them.

The most sustainable oil alternatives are Nuclear power, Solar/Wind power, and Hydropower.

Nuclear Power:
The United States currently has 96 nuclear power reactors which provide 20% of all domestic electrical output needed to sustain the energy demand for consumers. Nuclear power is the most effective substitute to challenge the oil and gas industry and meet future energy needs. It is the cheaper option of renewable energy when compared to other sources such as solar and wind power, and hydropower. Nuclear power is a clean energy source, as it generates emission-free energy, and has almost no effect on the climate and environment. As research develops, it could be possible that clean nuclear power will eventually power whole cities at a time, reducing the need for oil and gas companies.

Solar and Wind Power:
Solar and wind power are sources of sustainable energy that offer a clean break from fossil fuels and carbon emissions. However, most solar power and wind plants need backup power sources such as the electricity generated by a coal plant. In order to make use of solar and wind power you would need to install solar panels or wind turbines, which can have massive up-front capital and installation costs. The good news is that with the money saved on energy from oil and gas companies, the investment will pay itself off. Consumers rely on solar and wind power for 8% to 10% of the global energy use.

Hydropower:
Hydropower is one of the first sources of energy used for electrical generation as a renewable energy source. Hydropower plants account for 7.3% of the total US electricity generation. States with hydropower plants generally have cheaper electricity costs. Hydropower is produced with moving water. The water is directed from a source such as a river, dam, lake or even the sea, and released through hydro turbines to create power. Hydropower is a more consistent source of renewable energy as rivers run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Hydropower plants do unfortunately have a negative impact on the environment in that to build one, you have to completely dam up a river. Changing the natural flow of a river can result in less sediment build ups reaching the end of a river, which can disrupt the natural build-up of land as well as the possible interruption of the fish migration patterns in the river.