Feel like you’re falling behind the curve when it comes to clean energy technologies? Not to worry, we’ve gathered up some of the web’s best infographics to get you up to speed.
Oil and coal have had a monopoly on energy production for centuries, but their glory days are just about over. The clean energy industry is growing by leaps and bounds, and quickly approaching grid parity (which means soon solar and wind power will be just as cheap as fossil fuels).
With all the political debate surrounding renewable energy technologies, it’s easy to lose sight of the really important news: that clean energy is creating safe jobs while helping people to reduce their carbon footprint and save money. All without giving up access to the electricity that powers all the gadgets we can’t live without.
To help cut through all the spin, we’ve rounded up nine of our favorite clean energy infographics. If you’re a visual learner (or just don’t have time to read a 10 page article on the growth of solar) they’ll help you digest the facts in record time. Click on the images to enlarge, or on the credit link to see the original.
1. How Do Solar Panels Work, Exactly?
Do you find yourself smiling and nodding when people mention photovoltaics or grid connectivity, but aren’t really sure how it all works? This infographic from Solar Energy Systems explains it all.
2. Top 10 Countries For Solar Power
The U.S. could be a global leader in solar energy, but thanks to political delays and misinformation about solar’s potential, other countries are out in front…for now. This infographic from 1 Block of the Grid shows the top 10 countries in terms of megawatt production.
3. Top 5 Solar Energy Myths
Wondering what kind of misinformation we’re talking about? Check out this infographic from Bright Energy. It shows a few of the myths that solar critics like to spread about this amazing energy source. How many did you believe?
4. Solar Jobs In America
Opponents of solar power often claim that weaning ourselves off coal and oil would be disastrous for our economy because it would eliminate jobs. What they fail to mention is how many jobs it could create! This infographic from 1 Block of the Grid proves that embracing clean energy could be the best thing that ever happened to the American workforce.
5. How Is Wind Power Harvested?
Not sure how a gust of wind is transformed into juice for your phone? No worries, this neat infographic from Daily Infographic explains how wind turbines turn sweet breezes into clean energy, as well as other fascinating facts about this quickly growing industry.
6. Top 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Wind Power
Did you know that a wind turbine has as many as 8,000 different components? Or that as much as 20 percent of our nation’s electricity could come from wind energy by 2030? These and more mind-blowing facts about wind can be found in this 6 part infographic from the Department of Energy.
7. How Loud Is A Wind Turbine?
Just like solar, wind energy comes with its own set of myths and misconceptions. Some people say they’re unsightly, dangerous for animals, and too loud to be set up near urban areas (where they’re needed the most). This interesting infographic from GE shows that you can’t believe everything you hear.
8. Harnessing The Power Of Geothermal Energy
Solar and wind might be the most popular forms of clean energy, but they’re not the only ones you should know about. Geothermal energy systems tap into the thermal energy generated and stored in the Earth for energy efficient heating and cooling. Never heard of it? Check out this infographic from Wellhome.
9. Energy: Our Past & Future
By now your head is probably swimming with facts and figures about all different types of clean energy. But what does it really mean? How long has it taken us to get this far, and how long will we continue to squeeze the last bits of fossil fuels from the ground? This award-winning inforgraphic from Linda Nakanishi puts it all in perspective.
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Lead Image: Jurgen