Oct 22nd, 2013
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What is Solar Energy?
Solar energy is the cleanest and most inexhaustible form of all known energy sources. Solar radiation (heat, light and other radiation emitted from the sun) is the primary energy source for almost all natural processes on earth.
The sun provides massive amounts of renewable energy that can be harnessed to provide us with heat and electricity, the two key requirements for running the modern world.
The amount of solar energy that falls on the Earth in just one hour is enough to power the world for a whole year.
Fossil fuels such as gasoline/petrol, diesel, LPG, coal and natural gas power much of the modern world. These materials are burnt to release the energy contained in the carbon atomic bonds, but there are harmful byproducts, a major one being CO2. Increased CO2 levels in the atmosphere act like an insulating layer, trapping heat like a greenhouse, and causing the earth to gradually warm. This occurrence is commonly referred to as Global Warming, and is a key factor behind the Climate Change our planet Earth is experiencing.
Climate change is something that impacts all humans. The effects are many and varied but in general terms it brings more extreme and erratic weather patterns... Things that directly effect the life, safety and prosperity of the human race.
For more information on climate change, please visit these reputable sites:
Unfortunately strong lobbying of many governments around the world by those who profit from continued use of fossil fuels has resulted in a severe lack of action to reduce CO2 emissions and curb further global warming by those with the responsibility and power to do so.
Fortunately there is a growing wave of awareness and action to implement technologies and practices to reduce CO2 emissions, and to move the world towards using a more sustainable energy mix. Apricus's ranges of solar thermal products are a part of that clean energy mix. Apricus products are an effective way for ordinary businesses and households to directly reduce their own carbon footprint and help become part of the solution!
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How much CO2 can be saved?
By using renewable energy sources such a Solar Thermal, Solar PV, Wind, Hydro and Geothermal, reliance on fossil fuels can be minimised, thus directly reducing CO2 emissions.
On average, for every 1kWh of grid electricity from non-renewable energy sources, around 0.6kg / 1.3lbs of CO2 is produced, and burning natural gas for water heating produces about 0.185g / 0.4lbs of CO2 for every kWh (not including production and delivery embodied carbon or gas burner efficiency).
In the average household, water heating accounts for around 30% of CO2 emissions. Installing a solar water heater can provide between 50-90% of a household's hot water heating energy needs, and reduce CO2 emissions by more than 20%. If offsetting electricity from non-renewable sources, installing an Apricus AP-30 solar collector can save around 1500kg / 3300lbs of CO2 each year. That is roughly equivalent to planting more than 380 urban trees, or each year driving 10,000 km or 6250 fewer miles in a mid sized modern petrol (gasoline) car.
A solar thermal collector is therefore an excellent way to reduce your household's carbon footprint.
1. Solar collector CO2 saving 1500 kg / 3300 lbs per year, calculated based on 2500kWh output per AP-30 collector per year and 0.6kg / 1.3lbs of CO2 per kWh grid electricity offset (Source).
2. Midsized modern car CO2 output of 150gm per km / 0.33lbs per mile (Source).
3. A medium growth coniferous tree, planted in an urban setting and allowed to grow for 10 years, considering survival factors, sequesters 39kg / 85lbs CO2 (Source).