Fuels are the sources which run the world today. Think of your routine from morning. You wake up, glance down in your phone- phone runs on electrical energy, to walk in to have breakfast- food is made on oven using LPG, you set out for work in your car or bus- all vehicles run on fossil fuels, at work you turn on fans, air conditioners, computers- all run on fuels by burning down fuels.
Hence we can clearly see we don’t run the fuels, but fuels run us. But what are “fuels”?
Fuels are those energy sources which the help of which various devices of daily use can be run, by using them in the same form or by converting one form of energy into another. Fuels can be categorized in two ways:-
- Renewable energy- fuels that can be replenished after using.
- Non- renewable energy- fuels that cannot be replenished after using.
So far the use of the second category of fuels is more than the first category. And this the major concern of the environment activists of today
Non- renewable energy
Fossil fuels such as coal, petroleum, crude oil, diesel, LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) form the non renewable energy sources. They had been formed million of years ago when plants and animals and other vegetative matter got suppressed under tremendous pressure and heat and hence some of them fossilized and some turned to fossil fuels.
Today those are the fuels that run the world. Humans are heavily dependent on these fuels to fulfill all his Knick knacks. And this has endangered the reserves of these fuels. The demand is more than what the earth has. Hence the reserves are depleting fast and a time may come when there will be nothing left for the future generations.
Not only this fossil fuels also leave behind a huge number of waste products after use. For example- coal leaves behind ash when burned for producing electricity, petrol and diesel leave behind harmful gaseous smoke when used in cars and it is released directly into atmosphere. Even nuclear power plants emit very dangerous radioactive wastes that have to be stored in pits deep below the ground otherwise it might mess up the human DNA due to radioactivity.
Only there are two sources which do not emit any harmful waste and they are LPG and CNG (Compressed Natural Gas). These two fuels are now widely used in gas cylinders for cooking purposes and in autorickshaw’s. They are by products of crude oil. But there is a limitation. There reserves are very limited. Their availability is even lesser than petrol reserves hence they are not much dependable sources.
If we do not cut down our demands now a time may come when there will be no fuel left at all for us to use. What would we do then? Is this what we are gifting our future generations? An energy-less earth! What is the benefit of so much technological advancement then?
Renewable Energy Sources
Renewable energy sources are those sources which will never finish no matter how much you use it during your lifetime. Such sources consist of wind energy, hydral energy, solar energy. Sun is the greatest source of all energies.
These sources are omnipresent. They can be used to generate power. For example – solar panel use the energy of the sun to produce heat and then this heat sorted can be used to charge up cells which in turn give electrical energy, windmills use the energy of the wind: its velocity to generate electrical power.
Similarly hydro power plants use the kinetic energy of falling water to run turbines to generate power. Not only this certain manufacturer is now making ‘bio-cars’ which run on fuel made biologically by the oil of certain vegetable and plants.
Another replacement of the LPG gas for cooking is the gobar gas. It is a very clever installment. It uses the methane gas produced by domestic human excreta that is locked in chambers. Once formed the gas is channeled to the ovens and this serves as the cooking gas in place of LPG.
“where there is will, there is way”. We can develop newer energy -efficient methods if we want to. These methods don’t produce any harmful chemicals or residue and hence do not affect neither the health nor the environment. No radioactive waste to deal with, no harmful chemicals, to need to worry about renewal, no harm to the environment.
Scientists are developing better gadgets everyday which can use these resources because at the present rate of depletion, the extinction of fossil fuels is inevitable. Hence precaution is always better than cure. But before that we can also do something about it individually.
Ways to save fuel
There can be many ways to save fuel starting from the individual level. To enumerate a few are:-
- Always switch off fans and lights while leaving a room.
- Do not use air conditioners unless needed. Do not leave any door or window open while ac is on.
- Take steps to upper floors rather than using escalator or an elevator
- Use carpool to office or school rather than individual commodity.
- Use energy efficient lights and fans at home or in office
- Fix any leaks or cracks in electrical wiring as soon as possible.
- Installation of solar energy panels in offices and street lighting. Intelligent lighting to be used in street lights that turn off automatically with daylight.
- Walk or cycle to the nearby places instead of taking car.
This are the few simple ways by which one can save energy. Every little effort from an individual level can add up to a great change.
“drops of water can fill the ocean”.
Hence, we should leave the conventional means of energy use and use the renewable resources to our advantage to meet our growing needs. This will help us to gift a better, greener and safe world to our future generations.