8 Advantages and Disadvantages of Alternative Energy

Conventional energy sources, especially oil and coal, are not only having significant effects on the environment, but are also getting expensive. This is when alternative energy came to mind to come up with a solution for the increasing demand for energy, while helping conserve the environment. However, it does not come without some drawbacks. Let us take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of alternative energy.

List of Advantages of Alternative Energy

1. It offers environmental benefits.
Low (or even zero) carbon emission is undoubted the primary advantage of alternative energy over fossil fuels. As you can see, wind and solar power virtually produce no carbon emissions, while wood can still provide a sustainable, cost-effective and environmentally friendly source of heating energy, considering that that firewood is sourced from sustainably managed forests and burned in stoves that are efficient.

2. It is sustainable.
Unlike traditional forms of energy, alternative power resources are renewable, which means that they can provide stable and sustainable supply of energy in the long run. Naturally, wind will not stop blowing, the sun will not stop shining and trees that are cut down for wood can be replaced easily.

3. It increases energy security.
As fossil fuels are unequally distributed around the world, global economy is dependent on a few countries that export them. With the use of alternative energy, this dependence would be significantly reduced, which in turn increases energy security with cost-effective and stable energy supply.

4. It is claimed to be reliable.
Dependence on fossil fuels also impacts national energy policies. However, we can rely on solar and wind plants to be distributed over large geographical area, given that weather disruptions would not cut off power to the region.

List of Disadvantages of Alternative Energy

1. It requires high costs.
Unfortunately, technologies that use alternative energy sources have remained to be relatively expensive, which is having a major influence on energy prices that in turn cause concerns about the adverse effects on the economy.

2. It has issues in terms of system stability.
The energy industry is always seeking for alternatives to lower carbon dioxide emissions, while still being able to meet the rising demand, which means that energy supply systems should be able to remain stable to satisfy the demand and supply needs. However, current technologies available for alternative energy are still not able to produce sufficient energy to meet the demand.

3. It efficiency is still at a low level.
As alternative energy technologies are relatively new, they are still not particularly efficient, which poses a problem with feasibility as investments may not be returned even in the long run. This is the reason why the interest of private investors in green technologies is still relatively low, while governments can only finance a certain amount at a time.

4. It is not that reliable in terms of supply.
Actually, alternative energy relies heavily upon the weather, and in the event of bad atmospheric conditions, renewable energy sources would lack the capacity to produce power. This would mean that we need to reduce the amount of energy usage when opting for renewable power sources.

Without a doubt, alternative energy brings about great benefits, but it is still not without some drawbacks. Based on the advantages and disadvantages listed above, what is your opinion about using alternative power sources?