The importance of recycling, plastic usage and renewable energy has dragged its way up to the main headlines in much of the media. There are people protesting in central London and activists emailing supermarkets about their plastic usage, the more coverage this issue gets, more time and effort is going to be used thinking about the way we use our planets energy and resources. Renewable energy is desperately needed for a variety of reasons, and the world needs engineers that are going to help mankind reach our goals of reducing emissions and use of resources. The demand for engineers working in the renewable sector is strong and will no doubt increase in the coming years. Engineers are needed to research, design and construct ways to improve the way we use energy and resources and find new eco-friendly and financially sustainable sources of energy. Talented engineers from all sectors can bring their talents and help this crisis. The renewable and sustainability sector is a very rewarding sector of engineering to be involved in.
The importance of renewable energy sources
In regard to the way people consume energy, much of the world is still highly reliant on fossil fuels. We all know the bad effects these types of fuels can have on the environment, it’s being drilled into our brains. So why do we still use them? We already have the resources and the knowledge, therefore it’s easy to use. It has reached a point where we have taken advantage of the world we live in and time to step up and fight to find a change. There are several long-term issues with the use of damaging energy sources like fossil fuels and they include, but are not limited to:
- Climate Change
- Public Health and Safety
- They are not reusable
According to National Geographic carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels are continuing to rise, hitting record levels in 2018. Excessive use of these types of energy sources does more than just damage the wildlife and plants around us, it is damaging our ability to breath fresh and clean air. When you burn a fossil fuel, it’s gone, but the effects are long-lasting on us and the planet. The planet needs worldwide support in order to change the way we live. That is why engineers are so important.
Renewable sources have countless benefits and being clean sources of energy is just one of them. We need more and more people to develop ideas and help us bring technology forward. According to the American Society of Engineers, just about 20% of the world’s electricity comes from renewable power sources. With the help of engineers everywhere, we can make that into an even higher percentage and begin to heal the planet.
Renewable energy sources
- Wind Energy (Turbines)
- Solar energy (Solar panel farms and roof panels)
- Hydraulic and hydroelectric energy
- Tidal and wave energy
- Biodiesel (organic fuel for vehicles obtained from used food and vegetable oils)
We are not limited to the energy sources listed above, there are so many different ways to generate energy and there are people thinking of new ways to improve our research. In comparison to fossil fuels, there are fewer negative impacts on ourselves and the environment and many positives. Cleaner energy will bring us forward with both technology and a guarantee of energy supply. Today’s renewable engineers are spending their time utilising the renewable sources they have already discovered, whilst using their creativity to find new sources and potential new ideas. There is room for creativity in all areas of engineering.
Fight against climate change
Renewable energy does not have the same negative effects on climate change, it doesn’t emit the greenhouse gases that other energy sources give off. Being able to change small things in your home and with the way you live can help prevent further damage to the environment. Using solar panels and other types of energy in your home can really help, one person really can make a difference. Clean energies are made available by natural cycles, like the sun and the power of the wind and oceans, using these can stop us risking our planets future.
People are becoming more and more aware about the damage we are causing to the Earth. People want to be using renewable energy sources, so they scope them out. They want to use eco-friendly companies and according to Acciona, a group dedicated to the development and management of infrastructure and renewable energy, the high demand for cleaner energy is causing companies to reduce their costs and bring in more engineers to develop more ideas. Renewables can play a leading role in helping the government to tackle the skills shortage in STEM, providing budding engineers with knowledge on how they can make a difference economically will open up a whole new world of ideas. There is money in the renewables sector and it is time to take advantage. You not only get to have a great fulfilling engineering career, you get to help make a change.
Why become a renewable energy engineer?
Engineers are, more often than not, very determined workers, they use their job to fuel their passion and when you are passionate about something, you may often get the best results. In renewables you will be introduced to a whole new world of ideas and potential future technologies. You will learn about the dangers of other energy forms and how they are impacting us as a society. Being passionate about sustainability and the environment is a good place to start.
As an engineer working in the renewable energy industry, you will be needed. There is so much room in the industry for new and experienced engineers to bring new skills and ideas. We can always improve and that is why we need engineers like you. It is rapidly developing, and you could be the next engineer to have that breakthrough. Always do what you love and make a difference whilst doing it.