Student’s Corner

Renewable Energies’ Opposition

It is no secret that it has proven challenging to transform the sources of our electric grids into renewable ones. There are obviously the difficulties of cost and time, along with some other logistical and bureaucratic reasons. However, some reasons for this difficulty are unclear and may be resolved with some simple actions.

The most common renewable sources are wind and solar energy, which meet a lot of opposition due to their space requirements and “obstruction of views”. Solar farms tend to take up a lot of space as they require a vast amount of solar panels. Wind farms get a lot of resistance as they may “crowd” or “ruin” a view because they are considered ugly by some people.

The space consumption by many renewable sources can feel overwhelming in many ways, but we must think of solutions that could make them better. Plenty of methods to further utilize the space that these renewable energy facilities occupy are being explored, and significant progress is being made for many of them. This could make more land options available for these facilities and could remove the discomfort of the large land usage.

How an energy facility obstructs the views and nature of an environment is important. However, the presence of these energy facilities alone does not make any area uglier or worse, it just changes things. Windmills are a big target for such challenges in their planning and installation process, but many also find windmills pretty and that they add character to an area. Interestingly, windmills are treasured and adored in other countries, such as the Netherlands. The Dutch windmills have existed for many years and have been adored internationally. If we could find a way to customize the windmills, or any renewable energy production, to add to the area instead of diminishing it, we could open many more options and cool experiences.

Renewable energy faces many challenges on its way to being our primary source of energy, and some of these challenges are not being addressed as much as they should. The simple things that affect where and how renewable energy facilities will be placed matter. We must continue finding new ways around these challenges and find a way to better our world.

Written by Zein Tynon ’24.


Photo Credits:

Photo by Appolinary Kalashnikova on Unsplash.