It’s an exciting time for families wishing to lead a more sustainable life and save on their monthly energy bills. Net zero energy homes have already arrived, and they are making waves in the U.S. property market. In some states (e.g. California), most new abodes and residential apartment blocks three storeys or higher will have solar panels on their roofs. This will be the case from 2020, and currently, some states already have thousands of homes with a net-zero energy expenditure. Because sustainable energy technologies are advancing so fast, there are many ways in which families can reduce their carbon footprint without sacrificing on luxury and comfort. These are just a few energies you may be using in the near future.
Relying On Renewable Natural Gas
Natural gas is currently accepted as one of the cleanest of the existing fossil fuels, with new technologies such as horizontal drilling making its extraction more effective. Despite its superiority over other fuels in terms of pureness, one potential threat is the emission of methane – a gas that contributes to global warming. Natural gas companies are currently seeking new ways to produce energy sustainably via the creation of renewable natural gas (RNG). This is made from organic waste from forests, landfills and treatment plants. The gas obtained is cleaned and delivered to pipelines that can potentially be used by homes, offices and industry. Some states are already passing laws that require regulators to consider adopting a renewable gas mandate; if these laws are approved, then gas utilities will be relying considerably more on RNG by 2030.
Here Comes The Sun
Many homes in the U.S. are already relying on solar energy for their complete energy needs. Something a little more futuristic, however, are rotating homes which rely 100% on solar energy. These homes, four of which have been built in the coastal city of Estepona in southern Spain, rotate (either clockwise or counter-clockwise) every 15 minutes to maximize the amount of solar energy produced. Similar rotating homes also exist in the UK, Germany, Australia, and yes – Connecticut! Who’s to say that the rest of America won’t soon be following suit?
The Power Of Water
Around 20% of all electricity on the planet is already being generated by hydropower., which is a 100% clean fuel sourced renewed by rain and snowfall. In America, hydropower produces enough electricity to satisfy the energy needs of around 28 million people. In Wisconsin, enough hydropower is harnessed to supply the home needs of around 650,000 people. The use of hydropower is predicted to grow in the UnitedStates; indeed, this country is already one of the five largest producers of this clean energy in the world. New technologies for harnessing hydropower – including hydrokinetic, tidal and wave energy – are currently in various stages of research and development. Industry estimates have noted that the U.S.’s wave potential stands at 90 GW. One University of Florida study found that in this state, between 4 and 10GW of power can potentially be created by waves alone. Other researchers believe that waves will eventually be able to provide 10% of America’s energy needs.
It is an exciting time indeed for families wishing to live in a greener way. With many already harnessing their energy from the sun, wind, and water, new technologies are constantly providing further hope. This is good news indeed, considering that some of these renewable energies – such as hydropower energy – are being threatened by droughts – one of the most devastating consequences of global warming.