There are plenty of energy sources out there that claim the ability to produce efficient results without harming the environment substantially.
Solar, wind, and geothermal are a few of the options people usually think of.
But one energy source had proven to be sustainable and versatile before there was ever talk of a green movement. Prior to the industrial revolution, wood was the world’s leading source of energy, light, and warmth.
As the world’s oldest energy source, wood remains a popular option when the conversation of eco-friendly solutions comes up. Wood burning energy is a very viable option for producing heat and steam, which can then produce electricity.
Biomass energy and wood burning energy have a lot in common – they’re both encouraged to be used in moderation as to prevent overconsumption.
But since the world has used trees in large amounts to produce everything from paper products to building materials, using them to provide power may be one of the most efficient ways to utilize the material.
How Wood-Based Energy Systems Work
Anyone who has ever sat around a campfire, tossed brush into a burn pile, or lit their way with a match knows just how important wood can be for energy.
Wood can produce heat and steam, and sometimes with the right additives, it can be used as a long-term energy source for powering everything from engines to mechanical plants.
Wood and wood waste, such as the chips and particles that come off large sections, can be used for multiple purposes with minimal loss of materials.
In this aspect, its making sure wood is used in the most efficient way possible. This is great news for those who worry about deforestation and warn that certain species of tree are being used up at too quick a rate. It is also a great power source for those who find themselves in areas where forests are plentiful. Certain terrain makes it harder to take advantage of wind or geothermal power, but it can make wood power a more prominent option.
From an energy efficient wood-burning stove to a plant powered by wood waste, there are many different instances where wood power is used.
How Wood-Based Energy Became More Viable
It is easy to assume just because wood has been the world’s predominant energy source for generations that it would’ve been abandoned after new options were discovered.
But just because gas and power grids became more common as the centuries progressed doesn’t mean that wood disappeared.
It remains popular in a number of applications, ranging from largescale industrial jobs to common residential needs.
For people who prefer to have devices that use wood, renewable energy is now a possibility.
Everything from compact wood stoves getting safer to largescale wood-waste plants becoming more efficient shows that wood and wood waste are still viable energy sources. Some prefer wood because of the old-world feel it offers, while others find it safer. As technology advances, experts keep finding more ways to use wood power.
This means that wood power may remain a supplementary source of power for the long term.
Wood is very ease to create, divide, and transport. It’s also easy to store, and can be transferred between units or stations as needed. This even gives it an advantage over prominent power types such as solar and biodiesel.
Does solar power have a clear advantage over wind power in all cases?
Or are there some instances where a person may choose wood as the primary source with solar as the back up?
Solid Choices for Any Situation
Solar and wood power both have the distinction of being one of the most versatile types of clean-energy options available on the market.
Whether it’s coal plants adding wood chips to their burners to reduce emissions or commercial trucks getting solar panels on top of their trailers to power the engines, these devices are popping up quickly.
Both solar and wood power can be used as a primary energy source or a supplementary option.
The environmental conditions and terrain will affect which option will be most prominent for any given person. Though both these power options are common in widespread areas, some locations benefit more from wood power than solar, and vice versa.
Solar power is efficient and portable when compared to wood power.
Even with the success of portable wood stoves and other compact pieces of equipment, solar is still more widespread because it can come in a different number of sizes.
This doesn’t mean wood and wood waste will fall away – as the world moves more toward clean energy, wood may become more popular than ever as an energy source.