Five factors to consider when interested in renewable energy

renewable energy resourcesHere at reneenergy.com, we strive to provide information to help you with your going solar or other renewable energy options that are available to you. Most resources shared on our blogs are USA based and hence are specific to the US context.

However, we have received questions recently from people who are not from the USA about how to go solar specifically in their respective countries. As a result, this blog attempts to generalize some aspects of knowing how to adopt solar or other renewable energy technologies based on socioeconomic, clean energy technological options as well as policy and regulatory frameworks that affect how you benefit or install renewable energy technologies for your home or business. This particular blog will just capture these factors in general and we will attempt to be specific and capture more details in our future blogs:

  1. Before adopting clean energy resources, you want to assess whether this is the right decision for your household or business. Any renewable energy option adopted is based on your energy needs and its applications and whether it makes economic sense. Environmental or sustainability reasons are other aspects that affect, especially businesses to adopt renewable energy in order to reduce their carbon footprint and help to achieve their sustainability goals. For instance, assessing whether solar is right for your home or business can be determined by how much you can save with going solar or whether you have a reliable source of power. Power outages are one issue that causes people and businesses to look for alternative sources of energy like solar plus battery energy storage. Many power outages occur during peak hours when there is very high energy demand that cannot be met by the existing capacity on the grid.
  2. Many rural communities remain not connected to the grid due to the scattered nature of these rural communities. As a result, many private companies in the energy business may find it unprofitable to invest in building the grid infrastructure. As such, these communities rely on government or donors to build this infrastructure which may take years to construct and it requires a lot of investment because the grid has to be extended at long distances with scattered households. Renewable energy resources come in handy in such a context. Consequently, many governments and donor programs such as the World Bank targets these rural communities with clean energy solutions such as solar photovoltaics (PV). For instance, the World Bank has conducted various studies and implemented many programs for rural electrification using solar photovoltaics for years.
  3. The policy and regulatory framework for renewable energy technologies vary from one country to another. For instance, some countries don’t have the net-metering policy—an arrangement for grid-connected solar photovoltaics that allows the solar host to obtain credit towards their electric bill by installing a bi-directional power meter. There are much other policy and regulatory issues that vary in from the country to country.
  4. Renewable energy technologies have different characteristics that enable them to fit in different settings based on affordability, site-specific parameters, design, and energy requirements in question. For instance, because of the intermittent nature of solar/wind and perhaps not connected to the grid; a battery energy storage system may be needed in some cases.
  5. The socioeconomic factors also determine the various types of renewable energy resources or sustainable technology that can be implemented, for instance, to solve lighting and cooking issues using clean technologies:
      – Solar PV comes with different solar technologies to solve lighting and other energy needs.

      – Biofuels including biodiesel and bioethanol provide cooking energy solutions and other clean energy solutions such as for productive use and agriculture. For instance, using sustainable biofuels to power gen-sets for pumping water or irrigation.

      – Wind-powered solutions for residential, commercial and farms in the rural areas.

      – Energy efficiency solutions for homes and commercial places.

Alex W.

A clean tech enthusiast with experience in renewable energy development & sustainability. Has specific interests and knowledge in solar energy & data science. Stays up-to-date on the newest developments in renewable energy and sustainability.

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