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Sustainable energy is the provision of energy that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. Sustainable energy sources are most often regarded as including all renewable energy sources, such as hydroelectricity, solar energy, wind energy, wave power, geothermal energy, bioenergy, and tidal power. It usually also includes technologies that improve energy efficiency.
5/21/2013 9:26 PM
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The Oort cloud is a hypothesized spherical cloud of comets that may lie nearly a light-year from the Sun. It is thought to comprise two separate regions: a spherical outer Oort cloud and a disc-shaped inner Oort cloud, or Hills cloud; the outer extent of the cloud defines the boundary of the Solar System. Objects in the Oort cloud are largely composed of ices, such as water, ammonia, and methane and are thought to have formed close to the Sun, later being scattered into space by the gravitational effects of the giant planets early in the Solar System's evolution. Although no confirmed direct observations of the Oort cloud have been made, astronomers believe that it is the source of all long-period and Halley-type comets entering the inner Solar System, as well as many of the Centaurs and Jupiter-family comets.
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Solar energy, radiant light and heat from the sun, has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. Solar radiation, along with secondary solar-powered resources such as wind and wave power, hydroelectricity and biomass, account for most of the available renewable energy on earth. Only a minuscule fraction of the available solar energy is used.
Solar powered electrical generation relies on heat engines and photovoltaics. Solar energy's uses are limited only by human ingenuity. A partial list of solar applications includes space heating and cooling through solar architecture, potable water via distillation and disinfection, and solar hot water.
includes natural energetic processes that can be harnessed with little pollution. Anaerobic digestion, geothermal power, wind power, small-scale hydropower, solar energy, biomass power, tidal power, and wave power fall under such a category. Some definitions may also include power derived from the incineration of waste.
Some people, including George Monbiot and James Lovelock have specifically classified nuclear power as green energy. Others, including Greenpeace disagree, claiming that the problems associated with radioactive waste and the risk of nuclear accidents (such as the Chernobyl disaster) pose an unacceptable risk to the environment and to humanity.