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Energy: The word energy is derived from the Greek word O in) and O work).
Which means ability to do work. Units of energy are Joules J)
Power: Though power and energy are often informally used as though they were
synonymous power can be defined as the rate at which energy is converted from one
form to the other, or transferred from one place to another. Its units are Watts.

In practice energy is conveniently measured in terms of power used for a given time
period. If the power of an electric heater is 1kW and it runs for an hour, then it has
consumed one 
    of energy
 

 

Energy is also measured simply in terms of quantities of fuel, such as tonnes of coal or
oil. The conversion factors are as shown in the table below.  1 Mtoe = 41.9 PJ)
petajoule = 1x1015 J, exajoule =1018 J and terajoule =1012 J

Table: Energy Conversion Factor


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The energy conservation principle has to do with transformation of energy from one form
to another, the total quantity of energy remaining unchanged. The principle, that energy
is always conserved is the First Law of Thermodynamics.

Forms of Energy
Energy occurs in many forms but its diversity can be reduced to four forms
-Kinetic energy: The energy possessed by any moving object. Within a material kinetic
energy determines the temperature of the material and thereby bringing about Thermal
energy which is the kinetic energy associated with the rapid motion of molecules in the
material
- Gravitational energy; the input of energy required to lift an object from the earth
because of the gravitational pull of the earth that opposes movement.
If an object is lifted above the ground the input energy is stored in form of gravitational
potential energy. P.E = mgh
-Electrical Energy: The energy as a result of electrical forces that hold together the
atoms and molecules of materials. Every atom can be considered to consist of a cloud of
electrically charged partcles, electrons, moving around a central nucleus.
   

Forms of Energy
When atoms come together to form molecules or solid materials, the distribution of
electrons is changed. Thus chemical energy, viewed at atomic level can be considered
electrical energy.
Another form of electrical energy is the electromagnetic energy which is the energy that
is carried by electromagnetic radiation. It is in this form for example that solar energy
reaches the earth. Electromagnetic energy is radiated in greater or lesser amounts by
every object. It ravels as a wave that can carry energy through empty space. The length
of its wavelength characterizes its form i.e x-rays, ultraviolet and infrared radiation,
visible light, radio waves and microwaves.
- Nuclear Energy: this is the energy bound up in the central nuclei of atoms. It can be
from fission or fusion processes.
  

Fig: 2004 Fuel shares of world total primary energy supply  ource: Renewable
in global energy supply. IEA fact sheet)
     !

Fig: 2004 Regional hares in Renewable Energy ource: Renewable in global


energy supply. IEA fact sheet)
OECD ± Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development
     !

Due to the high share of biomass in total renewables, non-OECD


regions like Asia, Africa and Latin America emerge as the main
renewables users. The bulk of the consumption occurs in the
residential sector for cooking and heating purposes.
When looking at hydro and other or ³new´) renewables solar,
wind, etc.), OECD accounts for most of the use with, respectively,
45% and 66% in 2004

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EIA tatistics

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Renewables are the third largest contributor to global electricity production. They
accounted for almost 18% of production in 2004, after coal 40%) and natural gas close
to 20%), but ahead of nuclear 16%), and oil %) and nonrenewable waste. Almost 90%
of electricity generated from renewables comes from hydropower plants while close to
6% comes from combustible renewables and waste. Geothermal, solar and wind have
now reached 4.5% of renewable generation

EIA tatistics
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Each renewable energy has its associated challenges as will be discussed, however the
biggest challenge in deploying most renewable energy technologies has been cost
competitiveness

With the exception of large hydropower, combustible biomass for heat) and larger
geothermal projects 0 MWe), the average costs of renewable energy are generally
not competitive with wholesale electricity and fossil fuel prices.

On the other hand, several renewable energy options for specific, small-scale
applications can now compete in the marketplace, including hot water from solar
collectors and electricity from small hydro and other technologies.
With worldwide adoption of stricter environmental standards and guidelines for
greenhouse gas emissions, it is becoming clear that renewable energy systems will be
credited for their inherent advantage in lowering emissions. These environmental
benefits will contribute towards making the delivered costs more palatablepleasant) and
are already the driving force behind policy initiatives in many countries

However, achieving substantial technology breakthroughs to improve cost-


competitiveness remains a priority

EIA tatistics

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ource: Renewable Energy RD&D Priorities OECD/IEA,2006