Renewable Energy is energy generated by burning organic matter (biomass). This biomass can be plants, trees, and even food waste. When these materials are burned, carbon dioxide is released. Because biomass is renewable, it can be used again. By contrast, fossil fuels are finite and cannot be reused.
Renewable energy plays an important role in the United States’ energy security. It also helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which are a major contributor to global warming. The United States consumes more than 50% of its energy from fossil fuels. Renewable energy is a growing source of power in the U.S. and can be used at all scales, from rooftop solar panels to entire rural communities. The key to increasing the use of renewable energy is to modernize our energy grid.
Energy from renewable resources has been used by humans for thousands of years. The oldest renewable energy uses were the use of biomass as fuel for fire. Later, people harnessed wind to power ships and other forms of transportation. In ancient Rome, geothermal energy was used for heating and bathing. By the end of the nineteenth century, renewable energy sources had become an important part of our lives.
Renewable energy sources include bioenergy, wind, and solar energy. Canada’s landmass and agricultural industries provide abundant resources for biofuel production. Wood and bioenergy are the second most important renewable energy resources in Canada, and they represent seven percent of residential energy consumption.