Physics T1 - Renewable energy resources

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  • Non-renewable energy
    • Will never run out - energy can be 'renewed as it is used'
    • Most damage environment but in less serious ways then non-renewable
    • Don't provide much energy & some unreliable as depend on weather
    • Bio-fuels
      • Made from plant products/ animal dung, solid liquid or gas & burnt to produce electricity, run cars like fossil fuels
      • Fairly reliable, crops take  small time to grow & some crops grown all year round
      • Can't respond to immediate energy demands so contunualy produced & stored for when needed
      • Cost to refine very high
      • Growing crops specifically, not enough space/water to meet demand of crops grown for food
      • Forests cleared for space to grow crops, species lose natural habitat & burning of habitat increases methane & CO  emissions
    • Wind power- wind turbines
      • Each has generator inside- wind rotates blades which turn generator & produces electricity
      • No pollution
      • Initial costs high
      • Running costs minimal
      • Lots needed to produce power, can spoil view & be noisy
      • Unreliable- only work when windy so can't always supply electricity or respond to high demand
    • Solar cells
      • Made of materials that use energy transferred by light to create electrical current
      • No pollution
      • Initial costs high
      • No running costs
      • Generate electricity on small scales (e.g. power homes)
      • Best in sunny countries, can work in cloudy countries
      • Can't make at night or increase production when there's extra demand
    • Hydro-electricity
      • Flooding a valley by building big dam, rainwater caught & allowed out through turbines
      • Immediately respond to increased electricity demand - more water let through turbines to generate more electricity
      • Initial costs high
      • Low running costs
      • Reliable source
      • Flooding of valley means loss of habitat for some species
    • Tidal Barrages
      • Big dams built across river estuaries (where river meets sea) with turbines in them
      • As tide comes in fills up estuary, water  let out through turbines at controlled speed to generate electricity
      • No pollution
      • Affect boat access
      • Spoil views
      • Pretty reliable (always happen twice a day)
        • But height of tides variable & barrages don't work unless water level same wither side
      • Initial costs high
      • No fuel costs & minimal running costs


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