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How is Solar Energy Renewable?

Q: How is solar energy renewable and why is that important?

Renewable sources of energy are characterized by the ability to replenish themselves without any human involvement. Examples of renewable sources of energy include solar but also hydropower, geothermal and wind energy. Solar energy is a renewable energy source because regardless of how much it is used, its supply will never be exhausted. In other words, renewable resources are not only characterized by abundant energy flows, but also by their ability for self-regeneration. Solar energy is an abundant renewable resource that we won’t run out of unlike nonrenewables such as oil and natural gas.

Significance of Solar Energy:

Solar is a renewable and nonpolluting source of energy to the greatest extent possible. Why is that important? Our society relies heavily on nonrenewable resources of energy such as fossil fuels. Burning fossil fuels produces carbon dioxide, a powerful greenhouse gas. An average person produces 4 tons of carbon dioxide annually. An average North American produces five times more, reaching 20 tons annually. Being a renewable and nonpolluting energy source, solar energy is becoming more important than ever due to global warming, but also rising prices of fossil fuels and increasing energy demand. Hence, replacing nonrenewable energy sources with solar energy is a great way to help decrease our reliance on declining supplies of fossil fuels and reduce our carbon footprint.

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