Reducing government control of industries activities and private companies once a location is deregulated such as in our energy industry. Retail Energy Providers (REPS) such as Champion Energy, TXU Energy, Reliant, Direct Energy and all other REP’s are permitted to purchase gas and electricity from power generation companies which are delivered by Transmission Distribution Services Providers (TDSP’s). Your TDSP’s are your local utilities companies that control Transmission and Distribution by way of poles and wires. For Instance, in Texas local TDSP’s are Oncor, Texas New Mexico Power (TNMP), AEP North & Central and CenterPoint. TDSP’s are regulated by the state Public Utility Commission (PUC) and required to provide non-discriminatory access to the grid.
Importance of Renewable Energy
Renewable energy is important because of the provided benefits. The key benefits are:
Renewable energy technologies are clean sources of energy that have a much lower environmental impact than traditional energy technologies.
Energy for our children’s children’s children
Renewable energy will not run out. All other sources of energy are finite and will some day be depleted.
Jobs and the Economy
Most renewable energy investments are spent on materials and workmanship to build and maintain the facilities, rather than on costly energy imports. Renewable energy investments are usually spent within the United States, frequently in the same state, and often in the same town. This means your energy dollars stay home to create jobs and fuel local economies, rather than going overseas.
Meanwhile, renewable energy technologies developed and built in the United States are being sold overseas, providing a boost to the U.S. trade deficit.
Source: Provided in part by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Department of Energy.
Types of Renewable Energy
The United States currently relies heavily on coal, oil, and natural gas for its energy. Fossil fuels are non-renewable, that is, they draw on finite resources that will eventually dwindle, becoming too expensive or too environmentally damaging to retrieve. In contrast, the many types of renewable energy resources-such as wind and solar energy-are constantly replenished and will never run out.
Most renewable energy comes either directly or indirectly from the sun. Sunlight, or solar energy, can be used directly for heating and lighting homes and other buildings, for generating electricity, and for hot water heating, solar cooling, and a variety of commercial and industrial uses.
The sun’s heat also drives the wind, whose energy, is captured with wind turbines. Then, the winds and the sun’s heat cause water to evaporate. When this water vapor turns into rain or snow and flows downhill into rivers or streams, its energy can be captured using hydroelectric power.
Along with the rain and snow, sunlight causes plants to grow. The organic matter that makes up those plants is known as biomass. Biomass can be used to produce electricity, transportation fuels, or chemicals. The use of biomass for any of these purposes is called bioenergy.
Hydrogen also can be found in many organic compounds, as well as water. It’s the most abundant element on the Earth. But it doesn’t occur naturally as a gas. It’s always combined with other elements, such as with oxygen to make water. Once separated from another element, hydrogen can be burned as a fuel or converted into electricity.
Not all renewable energy resources come from the sun. Geothermal energy taps the Earth’s internal heat for a variety of uses, including electric power production, and the heating and cooling of buildings. And the energy of the ocean’s tides come from the gravitational pull of the moon and the sun upon the Earth.
In fact, ocean energy comes from a number of sources. In addition to tidal energy, there’s the energy of the ocean’s waves, which are driven by both the tides and the winds. The sun also warms the surface of the ocean more than the ocean depths, creating a temperature difference that can be used as an energy source. All these forms of ocean energy can be used to produce electricity.
Renewable energy technology content for this section provided in part by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Department of Energy