Environmental awareness and the effects of human civilization has made sustainability the basis of future cities. Sustainability focuses on using materials, resources and design that lessen the negative impact on nature and the environment, and this includes using renewable energy resources.
Many businesses and homeowners now recognize the advantage of using renewable resources, which includes solar energy. Solar energy requires using PV (photovoltaic) panels to collect energy from light. The technology is now easier to manufacture and more affordable in the last two decades and has become prevalent in many businesses and residences.
In America alone, only 11% of energy resources come from renewable energy, 6% of which is solar. The rest comes from burning fossil fuels like coal, petroleum, and natural gas. These traditional sources of energy contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, mainly carbon. But using renewable resources such as solar, water, and air could help counter the effects of these emissions.
Experts project that consumption of renewable resources will increase in the following years. Renewable energy consumption has already doubled from 2000 to 2018 because the government gave incentives to households and businesses that use renewable energy resources.
Utah’s federal government gave the Renewable Energy Systems Tax Credit as an incentive to residents and commercial facilities. Many of these businesses and households worked with solar PV panel installers and contractors.
Aside from the tax credit, households and businesses can reduce their energy use every month. Many residents report that their energy bills were significantly less than before, which gave them huge savings.
PV panels can last for at least 25 years and require little maintenance. PV panels are also known to increase the durability of the roofing structure. The panels shield it from the harsh effects of wind and rain, which means fewer instances of maintenance and repair.
Another way to use renewable resources is to use building materials that are sustainable and have little impact on the environment. Many households and businesses are limiting their use of plastic materials for any structure, since these have an effect during their production and transport.
Green materials include bamboo, wood, straw, and even rammed earth. Rammed earth is an ancient method of construction used in Asia and South America, and require nothing else but soil, water and human strength. The earth is first packed into the desired shape layer by layer and pounded until the structure is compact.
But industries are now using recycled matter as part of their building materials. Some businesses are using recycled plastic, ferrock and timbercrete for their construction needs. Recycled plastic is used to create concrete from recycled trash and plastic. Ferrock and timbercrete are new types of sustainable materials. Ferrock is made from ground-up metals combined with other recycled organic materials, while timbercrete is a recycled amalgam of wood, sawdust, and concrete.
Many countries are considering climate change and the possible effects it could have not only on human life but also in human commerce, industry, and civilization. Using sustainable materials and sources of energy can help humanity build a future that protects not only the environment but also helps humanity to flourish.