Energy is one of the key components sustaining life on Earth, including human existence. The technological progress of human civilization resulted in a steep increase in anthropogenic energy consumption, leading to rapid exploration of natural resources of fossil fuels. As on today, approximately 150,000 TW of energy is consumed globally per year with over 85% of that still coming from nonrenewable sources; demand is projected to increase up to 30% in the next 20 years (IEA 2014). The extensive reliance on fossil fuels is associated with several major risk factors, which highlight the necessity of finding alternative energy sources. One of these factors is the limited resource base, which when combined with the rapidly increasing demand for energy would result in the depletion of available natural resources. The uneven distribution of global fossil fuel deposits creates another challenge associated with the security of energy supplies, which is greatly dependent on geopolitical climate. And probably one of the most immediate problems resulting from the extensive exploration of nonrenewable energy sources is environmental impact, manifested in pollution and global climate change. The latter has drawn significant political attention in many industrial countries resulting in a wave of new policies, which may ultimately limit the use of fossil fuels in the future. Altogether, recent trends in the global energy landscape urge extensive exploration of alternative renewable energy sources (Figure 10.1).
|Title of host publication||Solar Energy Conversion and Storage|
|Subtitle of host publication||Photochemical Modes|
|Number of pages||32|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 1 2015|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Chemical Engineering(all)