Why Green Energy is Better Than Other Green Products
We’ve witnessed the effects of climate change become more intense and closer to home over the years.
Faced with these disastrous consequences like increased volatility in storms and natural disasters, the European Union and United States have made concerted efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions in the past few decades. Despite this, 2018 hit an all-time high of global carbon emissions.
When presented with the world’s cumulative greenhouse gas emissions it becomes clear the energy sector is the challenge we must overcome to prevent global temperatures from rising 2 degrees Celsius.
What is striking about these statistics is the sharp drop in carbon emissions that was recorded during the period 2009 to 2010 when the global financial and economic crisis hit many highly industrialized countries.
As a result of the financial crisis, many factories and companies shut down, resulting in reduced industrial activity. The data tells us that power, particularly fossil-based power which many industries depend on, generates the highest volume of emissions worldwide.
Naturally, a country that aims to radically reduce its carbon footprint will start with their people and industries. Countries across Europe certainly are on the right track to achieve this as they aim to transform industries and their societies as a whole to go ‘green’. The target is to reduce air emissions from 1990’s levels to 40% of it by the year 2050.
To hit this mark, there is a need for major transformation both in industries and households. Calculating our carbon footprint is not only the responsibility of the industries or the government. It is a responsibility of every human being as well. Individual action to reduce our collective carbon footprint includes responsible travelling, turning to ecotourism, and building relationships with sustainable travel companies.
The race to meet the 2050 deadline commenced the era of ‘green’ trends, where green became fashionable, chic, and socially popular. Green trends have boosted the sales of ‘green’ products in the market and many businesses have jumped onto the bandwagon.
Benefits of Green Products
Lifestyle change does matter as far as reducing carbon emissions. Begin with purchasing products that are sustainably produced. These are green products which, unlike ordinary products, are manufactured using eco-friendly ingredients and substances. These are also products that reject plastic and chemicals, and often do not rely on fuel or power, meaning they are hand-made or artisanal.
How do you know if it’s a green product? A lot of fake green products are flooding the market so it’s essential to vet the product (read: scrutinize the label) before buying it. Usually, products are green when it is:
- Durable and does not require much maintenance
- Does not contribute to the depletion of ozone by not containing any compounds and toxic chemicals
- Made of recyclable materials and promotes sustainable management systems
- Lovingly made by hand or often manufactured locally
- Reusable in part or as a whole
Benefits of Green Energy
While supporting and buying green products can make a difference in terms of reducing carbon emissions, the contribution it offers in emission savings is small when compared to green energy.
Green energy, on the other hand, can reduce carbon emission by bulk in less time, less effort and at less expense.
Let’s go over this point by point.
First, green energy is the sustainable option because it is renewable. Renewable means it comes from natural sources, including solar (or photo-voltaic), water, wind, and biomass. It is described as indigenous because it’s natural, and thus inexhaustible or in continuous supply.
Second, using green, renewable energy on a household basis prevents the burning of 10,766 pounds of coal power. A carbon equivalent calculator will help compute the total carbon emission saved when using green energy. This is the reason European countries have committed to raise the share of energy consumption produced by renewable energy sources to 20% by the year 2020.
Third, renewable energy allows for diversification of energy supply and reduces dependence on imported fuels. It thus has clear economic benefits as it translates to savings for the government while creating eco-friendly jobs.
The UN Council on Climate Change is urging everyone, all people on Earth, to pitch in to meet the target of limiting average warming to 2 degrees Celsius. Scientists have been making this appeal for 20 years, but it is only after the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a warning listing the devastating effects of runaway climate change by 2020 that people started listening.
It’s hard to imagine how the future generations will look if we fail to listen to this call. This is about the survival of our children and our children’s children.
Go green today instead of suffering the consequences tomorrow. Switching to green energy will go a long way in mitigating climate change. Choose healthier, greener, more sustainable options. It’s easy when you walk the talk, not tomorrow, but today.