Innovation is what pushes humanity forward. Sometimes it is about creating something entirely new, but other times (maybe more often than not) its about taking a pre-existing idea, modifying it, and making it better. Today we will be discussing exactly that, from electronic cars to bikes, to renewable energy becoming more and more popular as better technology and understanding allow them to take the forefront once more.
The Electric *insert item here*
The easiest thing to point and talk about in this subject matter is of course, the electric X. From cars to scooters to bikes, everything seems to be going down the "electric" path, as it seems to be more efficient and less damaging. As a matter of fact the NY Times reported that electric bikes are having their moment now during the epidemic, not to mention electronic scooters that have taken the cities by storm, and as The Verge reports: "Boston-based micromobility startup Superpedestrian is launching a shared electric scooter-sharing service called Link, which is built around the super durable and smart e-scooters the company announced in late 2018".
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash
Photo by Nicholas Doherty on Unsplash
But hybrid and electric cars are not new, so why are we making such a fuss over them right now? Truth be told however, although hybrid cars offer great versatility and Electronic cars have been steadily competing with fuel based cars and the only thing that was truly keeping them back was how easy it was to maintain. Recently however with more and more city centers offering means to "charge" your cars while you park, we have seen an increase in popularity of electric cars. For you car enthusiasts out there, Road Show in their article can give you a really comprehensive guide to decide
True, cars, bikes, scooters are not a "new" concept, but electronic versions, linked applications to rent and leave wherever and self driving versions, as is the case with the Tesla automatic cars, is an innovation we cannot ignore.
It's hard to say really. Between advances in technology, younger generations being more ecologically consious and the way that alternate sources of energy are being favored over more traditional means, it really is hard to pinpoint exactly why.
However, we lets take a moment to talk about renewable energy, knowing very much how much we sound like we are about to start a bad selling pitch. According to C2ES "
Renewable energy comes from sources that can be regenerated or naturally replenished. The main sources are: Water (hydropower and hydrokinetic), Wind, Solar (power and hot water), Biomass (biofuel and biopower), Geothermal (power and heating)
All sources of renewable energy are used to generate electric power. In addition, geothermal steam is used directly for heating and cooking. Biomass and solar sources are also used for space and water heating. Ethanol and biodiesel (and to a lesser extent, gaseous biomethane) are used for transportation.
Renewable energy sources are considered to be zero (wind, solar, and water), low (geothermal) or neutral (biomass) with regard to greenhouse gas emissions during their operation. A neutral source has emissions that are balanced by the amount of carbon dioxide absorbed during the growing process. However, each source’s overall environmental impact depends on its overall lifecycle emissions, including manufacturing of equipment and materials, installation as well as land-use impacts".
From the dawn of the new century renewable energy use has increased by 100% by 2018, according to the article, and it has been the subject of much debate. From OilPrice discussing the finite nature of fossil fuel, to Power Technology shedding a light on the most used renewable sources of energy, saying that "Renewable energy sources are projected to account for more than half of global electricity production by 2035".
According to this paper early in the 21st Century, numerous climate and ecological related issues made the world leaders understand the need for a more eco-friendly approach. With overpopulation and our energy demands rising, but the Earth being able to provide only a finite amount of things, research finally started to pour in eco-friendly means to preserve what we have, and rise up to meet the increase in demand, thus the shift to renewable sources begun.
GridBeyond in their article, give us a more robust view on at least three reasons why the shift begun, but I would like to focus on this one: "As renewables are far more intermittent than fossil fuels, there are natural peaks and flows in energy distribution. This risk is incredibly problematic without the aid of balancing technologies. Now, thanks to technology like Demand Response which manages the effect of this intermittency by controlling demand, renewables are a viable energy source".
Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash
Thankfully as time goes by, technology allows us to revisit novel ideas from the past that would benefit us all, with minimum risk. As new tech allow us to minimize cost and make for less risky business ventures, we see the shift towards renewable sources of energy as well as a trend of taking something previously underused or simply "plain" and pushing it forward to the new age.