Possible solutions to Energy Crisis

8 August 2016

The situation about energy crisis in India and its potential remedies are discussed in this paper. There is a deficit in energy production. In order to meet the demand for energy, different options need to be explored. The solution lies in recycling, reduction in losses during energy consumption and utilization of renewable energy sources. Among these, the best solution to overcome this problem is maximum utilization of renewable energy, because it is clean and environmentally safe.

That is, the sources of renewable energy will produce lower or negligible levels of green house gases and other pollutants as compared with the other types of energy sources (Fossil and Nuclear energy sources). Recycling also plays an important key role in consuming the raw materials, which in turn protect the raw resource (non-renewable). The energy consumption has been recognized worldwide as a parameter of development in a society and India needs to increase it’s per captia energy consumption. In the present paper, an attempt has been made to review the energy situation within India.

Possible solutions to Energy Crisis Essay Example

Here the current policies and future strategies for the optimal utilization of renewable energy resources will be discussed. 1. Introduction & Overview: India experienced a crucial energy crisis on Tuesday 31 July 2012 when three of its regional power grids collapsed. Over half of the country was impacted, leaving 620 million people without electricity for several hours. The consequences were many; Hundreds of trains were stalled across the country. Traffic lights went out, causing widespread traffic jams in major cities, Emergency workers had to use diesel generators in coal mines to rescue miners trapped underground.

On such occasions, serious concerns about energy crisis were raised in the mind of common people. In order to meet the huge appetite for energy, as India aspires to become a regional economic superpower we need to explore other sources of energy more efficiently and reduce losses of energy and power theft. India’s power grid has grown significantly in recent years and is now operating at or over its capacity. However, one-third of India’s households still do not even have electricity to power a light bulb, according to last year’s census.

Decentralised power generation using renewable energy sources, energy consumption and recycling are the possible solution to this problem. 2. Consumption of energy in India: 2 a. Consumption of electrical energy and reducing the power loss in transmission lines: Power loss in an electrical transmission line depends on current. A reduction in current will reduce the power loss and increase the efficiency of distributing electrical power to the consumer. The power dissipated in the transmission line is related to the current and is given by; W=I2Rt (1)

Where, I is the current flowing in the transmission line. Transmission lines are used to distribute electric power. As a rule, society would like to minimize power loss due to heating to maximize the amount of primary energy reaching the consumer from power plants. We can reduce power loss by reducing the current or by decreasing the distance of transmission. In most cases, it is not a viable option to decrease the transmission distance. It is possible, however; for example, we could choose to build a manufacturing facility near a power station to minimize the cost of transmission of power.

One consequence of that decision is that the manufacturer may incur an increase in the cost of transporting goods to market. A more viable option for reducing power loss is to reduce the current that must be transmitted through transmission lines. Power loss increases faster with an increase in current than with an increase in transmission distance. Power losses in transmission lines limit the distance that electrical power can be transmitted. An option for the future is to use superconductors as transmission lines, but this is an exotic one and not presently feasible (economically and technically). 2 b. Energy Consumption in service sectors and in industrial sectors: In the commercial sector, the key energy services are lighting, office equipment and cooling. The intensity of energy usage differs across service and building types. Buildings can be the largest collectors of solar energy and therefore the electrical appliances (light bulbs, refrigerators, washing machines, etc. ) with innovative energy-efficient models, can reduce electricity demand and increase the significance of, e. g. photovoltaic electricity, to the whole energy budget.

Passive solar building designs can reduce the conventional energy consumption by as much as 75% and PV can provide the rest. Such designs use knowledge of the position of the sun either to allow sunlight to enter the building for heating or to shade the building for cooling, and employ natural ventilation and daylighting. Solar Industrial Process Heat (SIPH) is an ideal application of solar energy. As a matter of fact, 30- 50% of the thermal energy needed in industrial processes is below 250oC, which can be easily provided by low- and medium-temperature solar collectors.

Consequently, this application of solar energy is expected to grow as the cost of fossil fuels goes up. In Industrialised countries, 35-40% of total primary energy consumption is used in buildings. However, if the energy used to manufacture materials and the infrastructure to serve the buildings is taken into account then buildings’ share of total primary energy consumption can be around 50%. 2 c. Energy consumption in the Agriculture Sector: Agriculture remains a key sector in India, in which modernization is seen as enhancing more rapid economic development.

The 11th Five Year Plan (2007-2012) [ref section No 9] envisages 4. 1% growth in agriculture value added with the purpose of achieving an overall 10% economic growth (Planning Commission, 2007). Energy consumed in the agriculture sector is in large part attributable to pumping for irrigation. Since the cultivated area cannot be increased, the increased production will be only possible by increasing productivity factors and cropping intensity. Increasing cropping intensity requires principally bringing water to crop fields which normally receive water only once a year.

Increasing productivity will result further diffusion of modernized and mechanized tools. And this is a cycle (positive feedback) towards prosperity. 3. Recycling. 3a. Role of recycling in energy consumption: Recycling means using something over and over again. Typical items that can be recycled are newspapers, cardboard, aluminium, batteries, glass bottles. The advantages of recycling are reduction in the amount of waste that is dumped in landfills, use of less energy to make a product from recycled material (than it does to make it from new material), saving natural resources (Recycling paper saves trees and water).

For example, recycling aluminium saves 95 % of the energy we need to produce aluminium from bauxite. 4. Use of renewable energy sources: Renewable energy is the term used to describe a wide range of naturally occurring, replenishable energy sources — in particular, sun, wind, water and a range of biomass resources. Renewable energy systems are regarded as sustainable technologies or sustainable energy supply systems and promoting their development and widespread use is viewed as a technological solution to sustainable development.

The introduction of renewable energy technologies into energy production system is seen as a new pattern of energy production based on smaller scale generation systems operated on a more decentralized base in a liberalized market. Renewable energy technologies (RETs) have a vast potential and have the advantage of being environmentally sustainable. 4a. Hydroelectricity: Hydroelectricity is the term referring to electricity generated by hydropower; the production of electrical power through the use of the gravitational force of falling or flowing water.

Since we know that, hydro power is the second highest contributor of the energy consumed in the Indian power sector. At the present time, it is one of the clean energy source that can be commercially developed on a large as well as small scale. Recently, hydropower and small hydro power plants (SHP) have considered as most readily available, renewable and clean sources of electricity. They use the potential energy of rivers and supply more than 20% of total India’s electricity. SHP has also some advantages; they may be connected to conventional electrical distribution networks as a source of low-cost renewable energy.

Alternatively, SHP projects may be built in isolated areas that would be uneconomic to serve from a network, or in areas where there is no national electrical distribution network so as to improve the quality of life. 4b. Wind power: Wind energy is being developed in the industrialized world for environmental reasons and it has attractions in the developing world as it can be installed quickly in areas where electricity is urgently needed. In many instances, it may be a cost-effective solution if fossil fuel sources are not readily available.

Wind power plants, or wind farms are clusters of “wind machines” used to produce electricity. A wind farm usually has dozens of wind machines scattered over a large area. There are two types of wind machines (turbines) used today based on the direction of the rotating shaft (axis): horizontal–axis wind machines and vertical-axis wind machines. The size of wind machines varies widely. Small turbines used to power a single home or business may have a capacity of less than 100 kilowatts. Some large commercial sized turbines may have a capacity of 5 million watts, or 5 megawatts.

Larger turbines are often grouped together into wind farms that provide power to the electrical grid. New technologies have decreased the cost of producing electricity from wind, and growth in wind power has been encouraged by tax breaks for renewable energy and green pricing programs. Many utilities around the country offer green pricing options that allow customers the choice to pay more for electricity that comes from renewable sources. The most serious environmental drawbacks to wind machines may be their negative effect on wild bird populations and the visual impact on the landscape. 4c. Solar energy:

Solar technologies are broadly characterized as passive solar or active solar; depending on the way they capture, convert and distribute solar energy. Active solar techniques include the use of photovoltaic panels and solar thermal collectors to harness the energy. Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air, which can make considerable contributions to solving some of the most urgent problems the world now faces. Solar solutions to India’s energy crisis:

We can find 10 solar projects which are included by the government of India that can help to fight against the energy crisis: 1. Solar-power microgrid service in rural villages: Startup Mera Gao Power wants to have a total of 70 villages electrified with its solar panels, cell phone charging service, and distribution lines by the end of 2012. 2. One of India’s first megawatt-scale rooftop solar projects: Azure Power, a startup run by entrepreneur Inderpreet Wadhwa, is developing a project that puts solar panels on dozens of rooftops and shares revenues from power sales with the building owners. 3.

600 MW of solar in Gujarat: The Indian state of Gujarat in April threw a big party to celebrate the commissioning of 600 MW of solar energy projects over a year. [refer section No 2] 4. The aspirational country goal: The National Solar Mission in January 2010 set a goal of installing 20 GW of grid-connected solar and 2 GW of off-grid solar by 2022 — that’s 3 percent of the country’s power using solar by 2022. 5. SunEdison experimenting with rural projects, too: While project developer SunEdison has brought 45 MW of solar projects in Gujarat online, it is also looking at how it can make solar panel projects work in rural villages.

6. Selling solar like cell phone service: Startup Simpa Networks has developed a home solar panel product for off-grid customers controlled by a mobile, pay-as-you-go system. 7. Solar teaming up with water use: One of SunEdison’s solar projects is a 1 MW installation over nearly half a mile of the Narmada Canal in the state of Gujarat. 8. Solar lanterns: Startup d. light recently celebrated its fifth anniversary and the company has reached the goal of 7 million people using its solar-powered products in 40 countries.

9. Giant solar thermal projects: Areva Solar is building a 250 MW solar thermal project in the northwestern part of India (in the state of Rajasthan) that will use mirrors to concentrate sunshine onto water filled tubes to produce steam — steam that will drive a turbine and make electricity. 10. Solar for cooking, heating, making stuff: A company called Flareum sells solar concentrating systems that can be used for cooking, and for producing steam and heat for industrial applications 4d. Geothermal energy:

Geothermal Energy is heat (thermal) derived from the earth (geo). It is the thermal energy contained in the rock and fluid (that fills the fractures and pores within the rock) in the earth’s crust. In most areas, this heat reaches the surface in a very diffuse state. In the production of geothermal energy, wells are used to bring hot water or steam to the surface from underground reservoirs. Geothermal energy has often been accepted as a renewable energy resource, but they are not, especially on the time scale usually used in human society.

It is emphasized that “they are renewable only if the heat extraction rate does not exceed the reservoir replenishment rate” Therefore, the reinjection of fluids into the reservoir is significant for the sustainability of the resource. Geothermal resources are classified as low temperature (less than 90°C or 194°F), moderate temperature (90°C – 150°C or 194 – 302°F), and high temperature (greater than 150°C or 302°F) (Figure 3. 3). The highest temperature resources are generally used only for electric power generation. Uses for low and moderate

temperature resources can be divided into two categories: direct use and ground-source heat pumps. The applications of geothermal energy for direct use include space heating –both district and individual heating systems, geothermal heat pumps, bathing and swimming, greenhouse heating, aquaculture pond heating, agricultural drying, industrial uses, cooling, and snow melting. There are three basic types of geothermal power plants: [ref section No 9] 1. Dry steam plants – use steam piped directly from a geothermal reservoir to turn the generator turbines.

The first geothermal power plant was built in 1904 in Tuscany, Italy at a place where natural steam was erupting from the earth. 2. Flash steam plants – take high-pressure hot water from deep inside the earth and convert it to steam to drive the generator turbines. When the steam cools, it condenses to water and is injected back into the ground to be used over and over again. Most geothermal power plants are flash plants. 3. Binary power plants – transfer the heat from geothermal hot water to another liquid.

The heat causes the second liquid to turn to steam which is used to drive a generator turbine. 4e. Biomass and biofuels: India is an agricultural country. About 70% of our population depends on agriculture and around 50% of the population is employed in agriculture. One-third of our National income comes from agriculture. Our economy is based on agriculture. Its arable land area of 157. 9 million hectares (390. 2 million acres) is second only to the United States. This has enabled India to become the world’s second largest producer of paddy rice and wheat, among other agricultural products.

With an estimated production of about 350 million tonnes of agricultural waste every year, residual biomass is capable of generating much needed clean, renewable power for India. India’s total biomass potential is estimated at 18,000 – 23,000 MW – this is at least six times more than the current installed capacity. [Ref section No 3] Biomass provides the socio-economic benefits. Owing to its availability across India, biomass can provide villages too remote or poor to connect to the national electricity grid with a local and sustainable form of energy.

Distributed biomass-based power generation plants could also provide base load power that many other renewable sources cannot deliver. Biomass-based energy also brings a new source of income to farmers, helping to diversify their income base and reduce the pressure to immigrate to more developed urban centers, which are already stressed by over-population. Biofuels: Algae can be used to produce biofuel, called algae fuel, algal fuel, or even third generation biofuel. Compared with second-generation biofuels, algal fuels have a higher yield: they can produce 30 to 100 times more energy per hectare compared to terrestrial crops.

Algae, like corn, soybeans, sugar cane, Jatropha, and other plants, use photosynthesis to convert solar energy into chemical energy. They store this energy in the form of oils, carbohydrates, and proteins. The plant oil can be converted into biodiesel; hence biodiesel is a form of solar energy. The more efficient a particular plant is at converting that solar energy into chemical energy, the better it is from a biodiesel perspective, and algae are among the most photosynthetically efficient plants on Earth .

Algae for biofuels have been studied for many years for the production of hydrogen, methane, vegetable oils (for biodiesel), hydrocarbons, and ethanol. Algal hydrogen production has been extensively researched for over three decades, but no mechanism for it has ever been demonstrated. 5. Conclusion: If the nation is demanding energy and facing severe environmental problems, and if the utilization of renewable energy, recycling are the solutions to improve air quality, to fight against climate change and to reduce fossil-fuel dependency a radical change is vital for widespread use of renewable energy sources.

Since we know that the renewable energies embrace a wide spectrum of options ranging from solar, biomass, wind energy to geothermal and CHP applications, each option requires different set of policies and implementations strategies, new learning processes, competences and organizational solutions at both the demand and supply side. In this regard, a decentralized renewable energy policy which is the combination of the application of a specific technology, the mixture of the organizational and financial structure and the promotional activities, and the setting of each application in each state is unique. 6. List of references:

India energy Outlook: End use demand in India 2020. Stephane de la Rue du can, Michale MC Neil, and Jayant Sathaye, Environmental energy technologies division Jan 2009. 2. Indian energy crisis July 2012 Retrieved from: “http://www. greenlivingpedia. org/Indian_energy_crisis_July_2012”. 3. Indian energy crisis and the role of biomass Retrieved from: www. carbonneutral. com 4. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews Volume 18, February 2013, Pages 460–470 A comprehensive analysis of strategies, policies and development of hydropower in India: Special emphasis on small hydropower Naveen Kumar Sharma, Prashant Kumar Tiwari, Yograj sood.

Department of electrical engineering National Institute of Technology(NIT) Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh. 5. Energy in 21st century by John R Colorado School of mines USA. Published by; World Scientific publishing co. pvt. ltd, 5 Toh Tuck Link, Singapore-596224 6. 2010 Survey of energy resources: world energy council Published by world energy council, Regency house 1-4 warwick street London W1B5LT UK. 7. Green energy and technology: Algae energy by Ayhan Demirbas professor of energy technology Srinak University Turkey.

And M Faith Demirbas Sila Science and energy unlimited company university mab. Turkey. 8. Renewable sources of energy edited by Emily B. Kling, Ed. D Extension specialist, 4-H and Youth development and david R. self, M. S 4-H energy educator. Alabama cooperative extension system. 9. Integrating Renewable energy technologies into cities through urban planning. In the case of geothermal and wind energy: A PhD thesis submitted to the graduate school of Engineering and science of Izmir institute of technology by Zeynep Peker.

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