What is the Difference between a Renewable and Non-Renewable Resource?

Difference between Renewable and Non-Renewable Resource

The words renewable and non-renewable resources are thrown around a lot on the news and even social media platforms, but do Americans really understand what they mean? The idea that you could be causing major harm to the planet as a small business may sound dramatic. In fact, the mere idea that you can make a significant difference by changing your energy source can sound extremely daunting. However, it is all true – your small business is one of many adding to our nation’s huge carbon footprint. You can make a significant difference with a small change. Still unsure? Let’s take a look at the differences between non-renewable and renewable resources.

What are renewable versus non-renewable resources?

The main difference between these two sources of energy is that non-renewable energy is produced by burning oil and petroleum products to power motor and electrical generators. Even natural gas and uranium ore is used as fuel for heat, electricity, and reactors. The one thing they all have in common is that they rely on sources that are in finite supply – or a source that will eventually run out. On the other hand, renewable resources, like solar, wind, water, and geothermal, are sourced by the Earth’s natural elements, which means there are no limits to sourcing energy from them.

Pros and Cons for Non-renewable Resources

  • Pro: The world is designed to run on fossil fuels. According to some recent studies, non-renewable fossil fuels provide 66% of the world’s electrical power, while also satisfying 95% of our energy needs including heating, transportation, and electricity generation.

  • Con: On top of the amount of pollution that fossil fuels produce, they are also going to eventually run out. This means reliance on them could become detrimental down the line, once we no longer have access to them. A shift toward renewable energy will not only begin to reverse the negative effects, but also allow for longer use.

Pros and Cons for Renewable Resources

Each and every type of renewable resource has pros and cons directly linked to them; however, the overall reasons have similarities.

  • Pro: Renewable energy is produced by naturally occurring phenomena like wind blowing, water flowing, and sun blazing. As long as the Earth is turning on its axis and humans need electricity, there will be no issues with producing energy.

  • Con: The main con for all of these sources is access. For example, solar panels may make more sense in a state like Florida while wind makes more sense in the Midwest. Once the right source is chosen, then certain equipment must be installed. The upfront costs can appear high; however, operational costs will decline, meaning you will break even quickly and begin seeing a significant increase in your bottom line in no time.

When in doubt, SuperGreen Solutions can help you determine which renewable energy source is right for your business. With our help, you can work towards ISO 14001 compliance which indicates you are a sustainable business with an understanding of energy management.

Contact your local SuperGreen Solutions consultant to get started on becoming the leader for sustainable businesses in your community!