Sun: the Most Vital Resource

Topics: Natural gas, Fossil fuel, Nuclear power Pages: 2 (684 words) Published: April 11, 2013
Our modern industrial civilization is to a large extent based on using fossil fuels. Still, because of heavy overpopulation, climate changes, and scarcity of resources, one of the most precious and efficient sources of energy, oil, has already started to exhaust (Bode, 2005, p.81). This fact has caused scientists all over the world seek for substitutes to fossil fuels to avoid economic and industrial collapse. Experts in the field of sustainable energy have turned their attention increasingly towards solar energy in particular as a viable alternative to fossil fuels.

Solar technology utilizes the sun’s energy to produce electricity and does not rely on continual mining of raw materials. Consequently, this does not result in the annihilation of ecosystems, as witnessed in the extraction of fossil fuels. For instance, in the river Niger Delta, an ongoing irresponsible and excessive oil extraction can be witnessed. As a result of this activity, mass extinction of fish has been observed in the region, as well as the abandonment of the whole villages where people used to live on fishing (Nelson, 2008, p. 63). Another well-known incident is the BP oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico which spilled over a million cubic meters of crude oil into the ocean. Using solar energy does not imply releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere; the energy production process is free from any gas, smoke or other chemical waste.

Solar energy, unlike other sources of conventional energy, is free from monthly or other charges, except the first installation and maintenance fees. Operational costs are also negligible. Solar energy does not require costly and ongoing raw materials, such as coal or oil, and unlike conventional power production, operational labor is redundant. Kost & Hans (2012) note that even as prices on fossil fuels keep increasing, the production price per watt of solar energy has reduced by 60% in the past five years (p. 29). This, together with the fact that solar...
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