The United States is currently powered by a number of different sources. Energy Information Administration reports that the U.S. energy consumption in 2016 was as follows: Natural Gas – 33%Petroleum- 28%Coal- 17%Renewable Energy – 12%Nuclear Electric Power -10% For the past century, the main fossil fuels have been petroleum, natural gases, and coal. Fossil fuels are responsible for a tremendous amount of growth. The 20th century could not have been built without them. Petrol’s seemingly endless power has enabled a rapid acceleration of technology, science and medical advances. The price of this unprecedented and rapid growth is high. The effects of carbon emissions are disastrous on our air and environment. Nearly 75 percent of the human emissions over the past 20 years were caused by burning fossil fuels. Most of those fuels are used in transportation. America’s dependence on fossil-fuels must be addressed if we want to curb the greenhouse gas emission. Renewable energy is the solution.

Renewable Energy’s Potential. Also known as alternative or renewable energy, renewable energy is available energy derived naturally from sources like solar, wind, hot springs and tides. Health and environmental effects are positive: less greenhouse gases, cleaner air and natural preservation. Renewable energy is expensive and inefficient, and has been a poor alternative to gas despite its many benefits. Until now. Renewable energy has been a major player in nearly every category over the past year. Its cost-effectiveness, efficiency, and increased productivity are cited as the reasons. Renewable energy has quickly become a serious competitor in replacing fossil fuels over the next few decades. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory of the Department of Energy paints a rather optimistic picture. Their calculations show that the U.S. could generate nearly 80% its electricity from renewable sources by 2050. The U.S. can generate nearly 80% of its electricity by 2050 using renewable energy. Most of this energy comes from wind turbines and solar (photovoltaic) sources. Many American cities have already begun to switch from fossil fuels towards greener alternatives. San Diego and San Francisco are among the major metros that have already committed to achieving 100% renewable energy by 2030. This is not a big surprise. The American spirit is characterized by its ability to tackle urgent and seemingly impossible problems with a combination of ingenuity, grit, and determination. Renewable energy also has a huge potential to create new jobs. A report by the Energy Department shows that employment in solar alone grew 25 percent between 2016 and 2015. This equates to 374,000 total workers. American businesses have finally realised the potential of solar energy. A survey by GreenBiz Group & Apex Clean Energies in the Fall of 2017 revealed that corporate America is moving towards cleaner energy.

More than 150 private and public companies were surveyed, and 84% of them said that they “actively pursued or considered purchasing renewable energies over the next 5-10 year.” The sector is now poised for significant innovation and economic growth. Trump’s energy plans After one year in office, the United States is aware of Trump’s disdain for the environment, especially renewables, which are a vital part of America’s energy portfolio. Trump has not withdrawn the U.S., despite his bombastic announcement that he would do so (though such an action wouldn’t take effect until 2020). In response to Trump’s bombastic announcement, America launched the We Are Still In Movement, a coalition consisting of thousands of mayors, CEOs, and organizations that insist America’s responsibility and involvement in reducing CO2 emissions is irrevocable. His administration is still the biggest threat to America’s future in alternative energy, mainly through legislation.

This threat has a two-edged edge – it is marked by an obsessive commitment to the coal industry and a concerted campaign to punish businesses that use clean energy with high tariffs. Tariffs on solar panels made abroad would protect U.S. producers, it is true. The U.S. photovoltaic industry is dependent on foreign panels that are cheap. This has helped it grow six-fold in the last six months. In only two weeks, the renewable energy sector breathed an (ephemeral) sigh when a Republican tax bill was passed that preserved tax credits.

Future Renewable energy will be a major component of a society that is sustainable. The maths of capitalism’s rapid growth is astonishing in its simplicity. The whole system will collapse when the exponential growth model is met with the reality of finite resources and a closed-system. America requires an administration which understands, respects, and implements policies that support both the American public’s interest, as well as the environment.


  • paulwallace

    Paul Wallace is a 44-year-old anthropology professor and blogger. He has been writing about anthropology and other topics for over a decade. He has also taught anthropology at the college level for over a decade.

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