Renewable energy – clean power from nature

There is a constant need for electricity, which is why it also has a great impact on the environment. Since we cannot completely give up the use of electricity, it makes sense for its production and use to develop more sustainable solutions to reduce various emissions. Producing and using renewable energy is part of sustainable development and the fight against climate change. In order to get rid of greenhouse emissions and the use of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, and natural gas, that pollute the atmosphere, it is especially important to pay attention to the production of clean and renewable electricity.

Renewable forms of energy reduce dependence on non-renewable fuels and contribute the pursuit of carbon neutrality. The use of wind and solar power especially is growing rapidly on a global scale, and in the market for example wind power is replacing the polluting coal power. By using green electricity, you as a consumer can make an ecological choice for the benefit of nature. Although there are several forms of renewable energy and they are constantly developing, next we will focus on wind, hydro and solar power and their contribution as part of sustainable development.



Of the renewable forms of energy production, hydropower is definitely the most common in the Nordic countries, and in Finland alone, the power capacity of hydropower plants is approximately 3190 MW. Hydropower plants produce renewable, domestic, and low-emission energy by converting, for example, the water flow of rivers and streams into energy. Hydropower is considered a reliable source of energy, as it is possible to increase and decrease its production according to demand. A good example of the use of hydropower is Norway, where, thanks to the mountainous landscape, hydropower is produced more than the country actually needs, in which case there is also plenty of electricity for export.

The most important benefits of hydropower include the possibility of storing water. The reservoirs, which raise the water level, are built in connection with hydroelectric power plants and they act as water storages, where large amounts of water can be stored in times of low electricity consumption. When electricity consumption increases again, water can be taken from these reservoirs for use. Hydropower can be used either as so-called balancing power, i.e. electricity that is used during unexpected situations and to stabilize the electricity production, or as basic energy that is produced directly for electricity consumers.


Wind power

The production of wind power is based on the blades of wind turbines, which turn the kinetic energy of the wind into electricity with the help of a rotating movement. Often these individual wind turbines form larger groups called wind farms. Wind farms are usually located on load-bearing land or in the open sea, and they are therefore found especially in coastal areas and near hills and mountains. The benefits of wind power are based on its zero emissions, affordability, unlimited renewability, and rapid development, thanks to which the efficiency of wind farms has improved crucially. In addition, wind power plants create more jobs and bring property taxes to the municipalities where they are located.

Winds that travel near the surface of the earth are the most important for wind turbines. In too windy or calm weather, wind turbines do not produce enough electricity, and they require 3–25 m/s wind speed to collect energy. A large part of the wind power is produced during the winter months thanks to the windy weather. The strength of the wind is especially affected by different shapes and surface quality of the terrain, such as hills, valleys, and water areas, as well as the degree of terrain coverage in terms of forests, buildings, and snow, for example. Hills naturally increase the speed of the wind, while forests, for example, prevent the smooth flow of the wind.


Solar power

Solar power is produced with the help of solar panels, which convert the sun's radiant energy into electric current. The availability of solar power is also inexhaustible, and in addition it is an extremely sustainable form of energy, as overconsuming it is impossible. The popularity of solar power as a form of energy production is based on that the electricity produced with the help of solar panels does not release harmful emissions into the air, and they also do not require fuel, constant maintenance, or high operating costs. Whereas most of the wind power is produced in winter, solar power is naturally collected the most in summer due to the large amount of light.

Self-sufficient production of solar energy is also possible by installing solar panels on the roof or facade of the house or summer cottage. If you produce electricity beyond your own needs, you can sell it on as surplus electricity to the electricity company if you wish, as long as the solar electricity system is connected to the electricity grid. Although solar panels themselves do not store electricity, installing them can be a very profitable choice economically, because then the need to purchase electricity separately decreases and it is easier to protect yourself from increasing electricity prices. Solar panels can also be found in slightly smaller versions of various home electrical devices, such as remote controls, lamps, and radios, which allows the devices to be used without the need to constantly change batteries.