3 Ways Renewable Energy Assists in Creating Drinkable Water
The lack of drinkable water throughout the world has been a scientific priority for decades. Unfortunately, the process of creating drinkable water requires sizable amounts of energy, a resource that has also become difficult to sustain. Countries have relied on non-renewable sources in this field for numerous decades. Therefore, transitioning to new methods of energy creation is a harrowing notion. However, renewable energy's assistance in not only making safe water, but creating it through less harmful and more efficient means, communicates an urgent need to make the change. Here are three ways in which renewable energy can help to provide more drinking water.
1. More Productive Water Treatment
Creating drinkable water is a complicated process that requires a substantial amount of energy. This energy, when made from fossil fuels, is highly wasteful and harmful to the environment. It is also difficult to produce in large amounts. This is where renewable energy becomes a boon. Research on how technology such as solar panels can support the desalination (salt removal) of water has shown success. Struggling areas near coastlines can particularly benefit from this. There are high amounts of salt water surrounding these places, but the energy to desalinate it isn't available. If the best solar panels were distributed to said areas, the mechanisms could provide an efficient purifying solution. Solar panels lose massive amounts of energy as it becomes heat instead of electricity, but it may be possible to use said heat in purifying water. Renewable energy is also an effective way to clean water without using fossil fuels. This form of energy isn't sustainable, so a new method for creating drinkable water must be turned to.
2. Fewer Pollutants
Before water can be put into the purifying process, it comes into contact with unhealthy substances. Avoiding these issues would cause substantially less energy to be required for making clean water. Less energy equates to less effort, which in turns equates to a greater outcome. Water becomes polluted through the release of toxic substances. These substances tend to be pollutants like petroleum, which is used to create unsustainable energy. Factories that mainly use non-renewable substances are also prone to releasing said toxins into the water. Fortunately, renewable energy can also be helpful in this stage. By replacing fossil fuels with sustainable energy sources, harmful chemicals may be released into the ecosystem far less than before, if at all. Thus, the water can be safer and easier to clean.
3. Less Water Waste
Ironically, energy often requires water to be made as well. In fact, power plants use a large percentage of available fresh water for this explicit purpose. This mainly occurs when unsustainable energy sources are being used. Fracking and mining in particular require substantial amounts of water to function. It's also used to provide cooling systems during energy creation. This water could be used elsewhere by replacing these sources with renewable ones. For instance, replacing gasoline-run cars with electric ones lessens the need to create gasoline, thus cutting down on the consumption of water in power plants. Immediate life sustainability is arguably more important than energy, so any fresh water being used in plants instead of being distributed to struggling communities is in the wrong place. By using renewable energy, lives could be saved in the short and long term.
Water and energy are necessities for human life, particularly water. The two are also intrinsically linked. If one is made usable, the other is usually necessary and thus abused. Luckily, this doesn't have to be the case forever. Solar panels and similar mechanisms can do much more than light up a home. When renewable energy is used to create safe water, greater amounts might be made, less harm can be done to the environment and neither source may be wasted. Since finding ways to create drinking water is high on the list of worldwide priorities, if not the highest item, it stands to reason that this will likely be explored on a larger scale. By finding more efficient forms of energy, communities can discover multiple ways to improve the human condition.