U.S. Must Lead Renewables

The U.S. must work harder at becoming a leader in the alternative energy industry. There is so much innovation and potential for the success of green technologies, but there just isn’t enough capital available to support our entrepreneurs.

Countries like Germany, Japan and China… have all surpassed us in development (most specifically in solar cell production), and are well on their way to operating more sustainably and reducing dependence on fossil fuels.

Germany has also served as a great example for one of the most effective incentive plans for renewable energy, the feed-in-tariff (FIT), which states that utilities must buy green power at much higher prices than standard market rates. Even with the economic downturn, which has affected all markets worldwide, Germany has still been able to increase solar energy growth by 20-30% per year. ::continue::

A few years ago Portugal even took the initiative to build the world’s first-ever commercial wave farm, Aguçadoura (using wave energy, important to know there are two types – tidal and wave) which was in full operation last September. Portugal is also home to Europe’s largest operating wind farm , and the world’s largest solar photovoltaic farm.

The recent partnership with China finalized by U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu will hopefully spur more growth in the worldwide energy industry, but progress from positive alliances such as this are still guaranteed to take time, which is a dwindling resource .

I think it’s generally believed the U.S. is considered the worlds leading country. And if the U.S. doesn’t wake up and start leading the renewable energy industry, then renewable technologies will never be able grow at the rate they need to be. I’m not only speaking about the government, because I do believe that President Obama and Secretary Chu are making good progress towards sustainability. I’m talking about the American people. The entire nation must be educated about renewable energy in order to understand why we must change our habits now, and not later. People are scared to support renewables because they don’t understand them, and this fear is something holding America back from leading the renewable energy industry.

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Jen Lynch is a public relations professional in New York City and a solar enthusiast. Her goal is to educate others on renewable energy technologies by working with green companies and other entrepreneurs and through writing, social media and PR. Jen is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and Martin J. Whitman School of Management. You can follow her on Twitter @jenlynch, or email her at jen.lynch@definitionbam.com.

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