As we see the effects of global warming playing out in our world, many countries are seeking alternative energy sources that move away from traditional, non-renewable, carbon- based fuels. This is a global issue and many countries have come up with wildly interesting and diverse ideas.
The United Kingdom
Have you ever been on a crowded bus, train, or any other public space and thought, “wow. It really is hot in here.” I bet most of us have, but have any of us thought to capture that heat to use as energy? Somebody must have because as of this past November, the mayor of London has started to use body heat from London train stations to heat homes all over Britain.
Another group of innovative people at the Adnams PLC Brewery in Britain have started turning the waste from brewing beer into renewable energy that can be sold back to the grid. Not only does this make money for this company and reduce traditional carbon emissions, it also reduces the physical waste that they would have had to dispose instead of occupying space in a landfill.
You guessed it! They figured out how to turned diapers into energy. The Japanese population is aging steadily and they had more adult diapers in their landfills than they knew what to do with. Until one Japanese company, Superfaith, figured out how to turn used adult diapers from landfills into something useful. They used a large machine to turn them into small pellets that can be used for heating and electricity.
Although it may be unexpected, dance clubs can do their part in helping the environment. There is a dance club in Rotterdam that uses the vibrations in the floor from people dancing to create electricity. Although it is quite expensive to install these floors, it may be worth it.
The United States
In the deep water just off of Hawaii, the ocean is being used to generate electricity. Some people may have heard of using ocean waves or currents for electricity, but have you heard to using the actual ocean temperature? Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) uses the difference in temperature between deep water and shallow water to make electricity and it is scheduled to be put into effect in Hawaii later this year.
These are only a select few sustainable energy innovations from all around the world. They show us that there really is energy all around us in many things that aren’t exactly expected sources.
To see more on OTEC check out this video: