What Are the Benefits of Renewable Energy?
Renewable energy in the Lone Star State is booming. Whether it’s wind power or solar power (or both), more and more Texans are making the choice to go green.
But why are so many people switching to green energy over traditional fossil fuels? Because the benefits of renewable energy are as consistent as the sun.
1. They are Basically Unlimited
Traditional fossil fuels are limited – once they’ve been burned, there aren’t any left. And it’s expected that we have less than 50 years left of burning oil at this same rate. Renewable energy, on the other hand, is essentially unlimited.
Solar energy is perhaps one of the best options for renewable energy in Texas. As long as the sun is still in the sky, we can harvest its light and generate electricity through solar panels.
At Rhythm, our solar plans are some of the most popular with our Texas electricity customers. And you don’t need solar panels on your roof. Instead, you buy Renewable Energy Certificates with your solar energy plan, which verify that your electricity plan is supported by solar power.
Already have panels at home? Our Solar Buyback 12 Plan will actually pay you for excess energy generated. A win for your wallet and your planet.
Wind is another plentiful Texas resource that makes renewable energy more accessible to Texas residents. The Chapman Ranch Wind Farm, for example, generates nearly 250 megawatts of green energy every year. That’s enough to power 64,000 homes. The ranch is situated near Corpus Christi on the Gulf of Mexico, where high winds are strong and consistent. We also offer a more basic wind energy plan, which uses Texas-based facilities to generate electricity. Like the above solar plans, you’d purchase the Renewable Energy Certificates to verify that your plan is 100% renewable.
Geothermal energy is another renewable resource that comes from the earth’s natural heat. This heat is produced just under the planet's surface and is another natural phenomenon that won’t stop happening any time soon. This heat can be extracted not only to heat water and buildings but also to generate the electricity you need in your home.
Texas uses three main kinds of geothermal resources. Hydrothermal energy is when underground steam is used to run turbines that generate massive amounts of energy. “Hot dry rock” energy is extracted from waterless geothermal areas that have heat but no steam. Finally, geopressured energy uses hot water from the Earth that has been mixed with natural gas through high pressure. The steam can be separated from the gas, and each goes on to power turbines to make electricity.
Biomass energy is created from burning organic matter, usually trees. While biomass is technically a renewable resource since trees can be grown endlessly, it’s not necessarily “clean” energy. Burning wood does still release carbon into the atmosphere.
Another natural occurrence that helps our energy needs is the presence of tides. The water near land is in constant motion with rising and falling tides. This movement is consistent and stable, making it an excellent option for renewable energy. Just as wind turbine blades are spun by the wind, underwater tidal turbines rotate with the tidal movements, creating clean electricity for customers.
2. It Keeps Energy Prices Stable
New technologies always become more affordable with time, and the same goes for renewable energy technologies. It’s a positive feedback loop. The more people who switch to renewable resources, the more incentive there is to build renewable energy facilities. This could lower the price of renewables in the not-so-distant future.
3. It Lowers Your Carbon Footprint
A phrase that’s been popularized in the last couple of decades is “carbon footprint,” which refers to an individual’s (or corporation’s) impact on the environment. Using non-renewable energy sources increases your carbon footprint since it releases carbon when it is burned to create electricity.
On the other hand, renewable energy resources lower your carbon footprint. Solar and wind energy are considered “zero-emission,” so there aren’t any pollutants as a result.
4. It Reduces Global Warming
A lower carbon footprint leads to a reduction in global warming, making green energy a top choice for protecting our planet. When fossil fuels are burned for traditional electricity, the greenhouse gases they emit break down our ozone layer. This layer acts as a shield against the sun. When it is destroyed, too much of the sun’s heat can enter the atmosphere and have devastating effects on the environment. With zero emissions from solar and wind energy, global warming can be slowed down and possibly even reversed.
5. It’s Local
We’ve already discussed how renewable resources are basically infinite (at least for the next six billion years or so), but they’re also more reliable in another sense. Solar and wind farms are established locally; if you sign up for any of Rhythm’s solar or wind energy plans, you’ll be getting electricity directly from Texas. That means you don’t have to rely on foreign oil for your electricity generation. Instead, you’ll have more energy independence while supporting your local economy.
6. It Uses Less Water
Though there’s plenty of water on the Earth, there isn’t enough freshwater to use up if we want the environment to stay stable. Nuclear energy, natural gas, and coal all need a massive amount of water to create the steam needed to turn turbines to produce electricity.
On the other hand, renewable energy sources don’t need water to function – except for tidal energy, but the water isn’t “used up” at all. Of course, solar panels may need to be washed here and there, but not nearly as much as is needed for coal or natural gas electricity.
7. It Creates Jobs
Any time a new industry is created or gets more popular, there are more jobs to be filled. For example, as the demand in Texas rises for great clean energy options like solar and wind, more and more employees are needed to manufacture and install solar panels or provide technical assistance on wind farms. In fact, there are currently more than 230,000 Texans employed in wind, solar, and energy-efficiency jobs. The sky’s the limit.
8. It Benefits the Economy
When more jobs are added, the entire economy benefits. More people with more income means more money spent in every industry, making the economic cycle even more productive and efficient.
But it’s not just a lower unemployment rate that helps the economy. Because renewable energy has so many positive impacts on the environment and reduces reliance on foreign oil, the federal government offers incentives for people to dive into green energy. For example, tax credits are available for Texans who want to make the switch to solar, covering the cost of up to 26% of residential solar panels. Plus, there are lots of local and state tax credits available as well, so check out the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency to see if you meet the requirements.
9. It Could Make You Money
Not only could switching to renewable energy sources save you money, but it could also make you money! Solar buyback programs allow people with their own solar panels to sell any excess electricity generated back to electricity providers. So, if your solar panels make more electricity than your household uses, you could come out each month with a small profit.
Check out Rhythm’s solar buyback program for more information on how to make some passive income each month just by using your own solar panels.
10. It’s Low Maintenance
Perhaps one of the biggest draws for people to go for renewable energy is that there’s hardly any maintenance that needs to be done. If you have solar panels, all you need to do is make sure they are somewhat clean and debris-free for maximum efficiency. And there’s always the option of working with a renewable energy provider like Rhythm. That way, you get all the benefits of renewable energy without dealing with panels or turbines yourself.
With all the incredible advantages that renewable energy has to offer, there’s no better time than now to get started. If you’re ready to experience a no-hassle, environmentally friendly energy, check out all the great renewable energy plans with Rhythm or give us a call at 888-774-9846 today.