The History of Pollution and the Modern Rise of Renewable Energy
The human drive to find an infinite energy source has been a common theme since the dawn of civilization – the moment our communities began outgrowing our resources. But up until recently, it has been challenging to find this ultimate source of power outside of myths and legends, and our progress has been heavily dependent on dangerous and finite fossil fuels – coal, oil, and natural gas. Throughout the industrial revolution, large swaths of the environment and atmosphere were destroyed, harming human health irreparable. As the effects of these became increasingly evident, policymakers took action.
However, there is still more to be desired regarding the development of clean energy. Even though technologies harnessing solar energy, wind energy, and hydroelectric power have been around for more than a century, much of the world’s energy still comes from fossil fuels. 75% of Australia’s electricity is generated through coal, and only 8% can be traced back to renewable resources. It is a global problem and one with devastating consequences. Scientists are sure that the long-term use of fossil fuels in our current climate crisis, raging forest fires, catastrophic hurricanes, and scorching heat waves have already begun ravaging many corners of the world. Australia alone has faced destructive forest fires and cataclysmic flooding in just the last few years. Just as policy makers took action during the Great Smog almost a century ago, they have taken notice.
There is hope as new companies, and startups in the renewable resources sphere begin to break into the energy market. AquaHarmonics, an innovative new startup, has begun to harness the ocean’s waves to generate power. Running tide, another startup, grows large kelp forests on docks and other man-made ocean structures to capture CO2 and keep the oceans clean. Innovative energy storage companies like Amber Kinetics have turned the tide in our ability to store energy through their unique flywheel energy storage system.
Though there may be challenges in the progress of renewable energy, there’s no question that it’s time to turn over a new leaf and create a sustainable future.