Fred Jaicks  Written and compiled by Fred Jaicks


Traditional types of energy use materials that disappear as they are used. These types of energy come from fossil fuels, which got their names because they were formed from the fossils of dinosaurs. Examples of fossil fuels include coal, oil, and natural gas. The more people use energy produced with these non-renewable sources, the less coal, oil, and natural gas is left on Earth. Instead of using up these resources, it’s possible to use different sources of energy that won’t disappear. These renewable sources of energy will continue to be present, even when people use them for energy. Examples of these sources of energy include the wind, the sun, water, and the ocean. Green energy can save money and the earth while powering vehicles and providing electricity for everybody.

  • Renewable Energy: Wind (PDF): Moving air is wind. As the sun heats the surface of the earth, the warm air rises and cool air falls toward the ground. This process makes wind.
  • Wind Basics: The wind has a cycle that happens throughout the day and the night. It’s possible to use wind energy to generate electricity.
  • Wind Energy for Kids (PDF): People built the first windmills more than 5,000 years ago to create power necessary for moving huge grinding stones and to pump water. These windmills were the first sources of wind energy.
  • Quiz: Test Your Solar IQ: Take a quiz to see how much you know about solar energy. For example, 173,000 terawatts of solar energy is hitting the Earth in an average moment.
  • The Water Cycle: The water cycle involves evaporation, condensation, and precipitation. As this cycle repeats, it’s possible to harness its energy to generate electricity.
  • Hydroelectric Power: As water falls or flows, it creates a force of renewable energy. Making electricity with water does not use up the water, so it’s possible to use it over and over again.
  • Quick Facts on Biomass Energy and Why We Need to Use it in the South: Biomass is another type of renewable energy. This energy source comes from animals and plants. Examples of biomass fuels are garbage, wood, manure, and crops.
  • Ocean Energy: The ocean has phenomenal energy. People can use energy from waves, from tidal movement, and from water temperature differences to make useful energy.
  • An Introduction to Solar Energy: A lot of the world’s energy needs could be met directly by solar energy. To use solar energy, it’s necessary to collect the radiation and convert it to electricity or heat.
  • Ocean Wave Energy: As the wind blows over the ocean, it creates waves. In some places, the wind blows continually, which makes constant waves splashing on the shore of the ocean. Scientists are searching for ways to use the energy produced by ocean waves.
  • Alternative Energy (video): Alternative energy includes solar, wind, water, biomass, and more. Scientists are working hard to find newer and better ways to use these renewable sources of energy to replace traditional sources of energy such as coal and oil.
  • Types of Energy: Two types of energy exist for powering things: non-renewable and renewable energy. By focusing on renewable energy, it’s possible to receive power without running out of the sources that provide the energy.
  • Microalgal Biofuels Capabilities: Algal biomass contains a lot of oil, which means that this source of renewable energy might be able to power cars, trucks, and airplanes.
  • Energy Sources: Renewable and Non-Renewable (PDF): Fast-flowing rivers can be a good source of hydropower to create energy for electricity. A geographic area would need to have these types of rivers present in order to use this type of renewable energy.
  • Solar Energy: Using Carbon Dioxide From the Atmosphere to Produce a Viable Fuel Source: Many scientists agree that solar energy is the most promising type of renewable energy. The amount of solar energy that hits the planet over the course of one hour is enough to provide enough energy to take care of all needs for the entire world for a year.
  • Biomass at a Glance (PDF): Burning garbage is one way of turning trash into energy. About 2,000 pounds of trash is the same as 500 pounds of coal when burned to produce energy.
  • Alternative Energy Resources: Unit on Wind Energy (PDF): As long as the sun keeps shining, wind will keep blowing across the planet. Scientists estimate that between 1 and 2 percent of Earth’s solar energy changes into wind energy.