If it concerns you about the energy we use and how it impacts the planet we are energizing, you are not alone. Whether or not you believe in global warming, the fact remains we have been using up finite resources to create electricity. Wind and solar are both infinite sources of energy. The wind will always blow and the sun will always shine. In both cases, more in some regions of the country than others. The professionals in both fields know where to go to find the most of both, and they are working hard to make them viable sources of electricity for the entire country.
The challenge as of late is not how to harness these sources, but the amount that can be harnessed versus the amount we need. Knowing this will allow electric companies nationwide to know how much of this energy they can implement into their grid. They do not want to shut down all of their steam turbines in favor of wind and solar power unless those latter sources can produce as much electricity as the steam turbines. If any one region can only get 50% of their energy needs through wind and solar, and the electric companies in that region find it cost productive to switch over, then they will do so in modest amounts.
The technology used here has been fine-tuned to where generating power is not the issue. It is generating enough in a cost effective way that makes it appealing to both the electric companies and consumers. Part of the cost-effective research going on right now is determining if integrating solar and wind technologies together is more cost efficient than both sources working independently from each other. As it stands currently, it is not. At least not in most regions of the country. Technology might advance to where it will be this way nationwide, but that time has not arrived yet.
With the growing need and interest in solar and wind power, technology will soon follow closely enough to meet 100% of this country’s electrical needs. That’s the thing about technology and the great minds driving it: it can meet the demand of consumers who call for change. Deriving 100% of our electrical needs through solar and wind power is not an unreasonable request, nor is it an unrealistic expectation. The technicians behind all of this know both and are working hard behind the scenes to make this possible.
It is only a matter of time. As this grows, so does the re-education, or cross-training, of technicians in the old field of generating electricity into the new way. A loss of jobs being no inhibitor of growth in this regard allows progress to move full steam ahead. Or full “wind” ahead, as it were. To use another play on words, the future looks bright for the solar and wind industries and, as a result, the fulfillment of our electrical needs in a much more eco-friendly manner than we are used to seeing will someday come to fruition.