We’re ramping up towards both winter and the holiday season. Those are both times when, at Postconsumers, we’ve been known to talk a lot about energy conservation. After all, these are both seasons when the average person uses more energy (and typically fossil fuel energy) than they do during the rest of the year. This year, we’re taking a more positive spin on the situation and looking at energy innovations that could make a real difference in the world. Some of these you may be familiar with, and some may be a surprise. Either way, they should be on your radar!
Solar Stoves: Combatting Hunger and Bacteria
In places where water quality is low and boiling is essential to avoid bacteria and other harmful contaminants, solar stoves are making a huge difference. After all, in many places with poor water quality, it’s not as though the local population has access to financial resources to buy bottled water or purification tablets. A solar stove allows for a one-time expense (or donation) of a tool that can help minimize food and water bacteria and illness for years. These energy friendly stoves are being used in Africa and India currently. Frankly, we think they might be a must-have on our apocalypse shopping list!
Solar Roads: Let’s Make it Happen
Unless you’ve been living under a lovely rock (and since you’re reading an article online right now we’re going to presume that that’s not the case), you’ve probably seen stories, videos, news reports and viral or social postings about this amazing solar roadway design. Not only could we convert every single thing that cars go on (not just roads, but airplane runways, driveways and everything else) to generate all of our energy needs with minimal carbon footprint (always remember that creating a solar panel leaves a chemical footprint). We want this to happen. How do we make this happen?
Clean Fusion Energy: We Love Elon Musk
Earlier this month we highlighted our favorite Elon Musk innovations, including what he had to say about clean, viable fusion energy. We’ll just re-share that segment here! The real independence from fossil fuels and, for that matter, finite fuels (after all, even the sun won’t last forever, which makes SpaceX pretty important) is fusion. And while many think that viable fusion isn’t even possible (or at least possible on a commercial scale), Elon Musk isn’t among them. While he hasn’t admitted to working on a viable fusion solution, he’s talked repeatedly in interviews about how he thinks this may be the most essential invention of the next century. This makes us think (strongly think) that in his spare time he’s brainstorming a solution. We’re putting a lot of faith in him to save the world, which makes us hope sincerely that this is what he’s working on when his brain is “resting!”
Massive, Gigantic Wind Turbines
This one may not seem so innovative since wind turbines have been around for a long time, but the fact that they’re getting bigger and can produce more energy could be a game changer in areas with high coastal or mountain winds. Wind turbines are a true example of “size does matter” since their ability to produce energy is directly proportional to the surface area of the rotor blades. On top of making wind turbines bigger, there are amazing innovations being completed to use software programs to optimize their performance. Now, the only real battle (other than getting people to adopt green energy practices) is to get people to stop complaining that wind turbines ruin their pristine views. Think bigger picture, people!
Wave Power. The Ocean May be Acidified, but It Can Still Be Used.
Wave power is one of the slowest moving of the clean energy solutions, but when you think about the fact that as the ocean rises coastlines will become larger and more powerful, it’s good to know that it’s out there and being worked on. We think that, particularly for smaller islands that don’t become submerged, wave power could be a huge difference maker.
Did we miss an energy innovation that you love and would like to share? Tell us about it on the social media channels below.