Alternative Energy Sources

Are you looking for alternative energy sources and fuel for disaster survival scenarios or for homesteading and self-sufficiency?

Alternative Energy = Renewable Resources

You have come to the right place - here is a directory of products and services for your short term and long term energy and sustainablility needs.

Solar Energy

The sun's energy can be used to heat and cool buildings in a number of ways. We can also use solar cells to power just about anything else - from calculators to satellites. These days, installing a solar electric panel system in a household is more affordable than ever. You can use them to completely handle your energy source for your home or just partially. If you decide to have a system that handles all of your household needs, you will need to have an electricity storage system as well. If your system is attached to the utility grid, you may also be able to sell your extra electricity to the utility company.

There is also, a net metering option. Net Metering enables residential or commercial customers who generate their solar energy to receive compensation for the electricity they generate. Net metering rules require electric utilities in a state to ensure that customers' electric meters track how much electricity is used and how much is provided to the electric grid. Electricity is "banked" with the utility company. When a customer needs electricity, the customer uses electricity from the grid. In effect, excess electricity is returned to the customer at a later time when they otherwise would have paid for it.

Hydro Energy

Any time you can find flowing water, there is an opportunity to use it to create a power source. Currently in the United States, about 7% of the energy produced is done so via hydroelectric power plants. One of the biggest benefit is that nothing has to be burned to generate electricity. The other, of course, is that it is renewable. With a water source that is dammed, you have high-pressure energy conversion, but there are other kinds of hydro energy, too.

Ocean Energy

The ocean, also a hydro energy, can produce two kinds of energy: thermal from solar heating and mechanical from tides and waves. Both systems can be used to generate electricity. Thus far, it isn't cost-effective to do either on a large-scale basis, although there are some projects underway in various parts of the world (i.e. Pelamis Wave Energy Converter in Portugal).

With all of the ocean rolling in to California's shores, 23 percent of the electricity needs for the state could be provided for with deep water wave power alone, if the constraints above were not an issue. (Source: http://www.energy.ca.gov/oceanenergy/)

BioMass Energy

Most people don't realize that when they are burning wood, they are creating heat by using biomass energy. It is a renewable energy source that is plentiful and does not add to greenhouse gas emissions. Other biomass energy sources are: food crops, grassy and woody plants, oil-rich algae, and residues from agriculture and forestry.

According to The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, "The recycling of biomass wastes mitigates the need to create new landfills and landfill gas-to-energy projects turn methane emissions from landfills into useful energy." (http://www.puco.ohio.gov/puco/index.cfm/industry-information/industry-topics/biomass-energy-and-its-benefits/)

Wind Energy

wind turbines

The world has been using the wind to generate energy for hundreds of years. Windmills have been used to bring water up from underground as well as grind grains. Today, wind turbines are used to create electricity. They can be used as stand-alone units or they can be connected to the utility power grid.

"Abundant offshore wind resources have the potential to supply immense quantities of renewable energy to major U.S. coastal cities, such as New York City and Boston, according to the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management" (http://www.boem.gov/Renewable-Energy-Program/Renewable-Energy-Guide/Offshore-Wind-Energy.aspx).

Alternative Energy is always a good choice

Many cities and states offer rebates and incentives for making home improvements and and swapping out old appliances for newer energy-efficient models. Check your city and state's government website to see what might be available in your area. Saving money while making energy-wise choices is always good.

RE–Powering America's Lands

Special Note: If you weren't already aware, the EPA is encouraging renewable energy development on current and formerly contaminated land and mining sites. This initiative identifies the renewable energy potential of these sites and provides other useful resources for communities, developers, industry, state and local governments or anyone interested in reusing these sites for renewable energy development.