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Blog #13: Sustainable Through Technology?

The company “Tesla”, founded and owned by Elon Musk, was made to serve as a catalyst to accelerate the day of electric vehicles and later the use of sustainable energy. Being the leader of SolarCity, Musk says that SolarCity is supposed to serve as the sustainable production of energy, so that it can keep up with the sustainable consumption of energy. There is little to no doubt that solar energy will become the energy of the future. Sunlight in itself is already free and plentiful, so to utilize it for energy will be pretty cost efficient. Also, as a renewable energy source, it produces no waste/pollution or any harmful effects.

Solar energy is one of the steps in which technology is taking for the world to be able to sustain itself without the use of non-renewable energy sources, such as oil, natural gas, or nuclear power plants. These energy sources all cause harmful pollution and can become a danger. Lots of emission from these cause greenhouse gasses to form, and many of these airborne waste can cause health problems to people. Nuclear power plants also have to discard the radioactive waste after using it up, which can range from being harmless to completely harmful. Renewable energy sources, such as solar, can produce energy and provide fuel without the pollution and concerns about waste and harmful materials.

As good as solar energy may sound, there are still a few problems with obtaining it. Sunlight is not just something that can be gathered and stored. One issue is the corporate world. Big companies that own oil mills and nuclear plants are totally against renewable resources for the fact that they will lose money. And yes, there are certain batteries that can store energy from solar panels, but those can be very costly and could dent one’s wallet. On the topic of cost, building solar panels are already expensive due to the construction of it being of silicon and crystals. So what solution is there that can tackle at least one of these problems? There is, in fact, a possible solution to the problem of storage. A few researchers in Sweden are developing a certain liquid that could possibly absorb the solar energy. This leads to¬† better storage option for solar, however this concept is still in development. The technology for this has great potential for the near(or far) future, but at the moment it isn’t capable of absorbing as much solar energy that is necessary for daily use.

Relying on technology to sustain life can sound scary to some, but there are many benefits of it that outweigh the negatives of it. Not only the use of renewable resources better for the environment, but it can also potentially save the human race as well. Using technology as a means of sustainability in this world just might be what we need.

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