Tidal Energy – An Alternative Energy Source
Alternative energy – energy, as solar, wind, or nuclear energy, that can replace or supplement traditional fossil-fuel sources, as coal, oil, and natural gas. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/alternative+energy

There are many alternative energy sources available to us today. The next time you are out driving and you pass a body of water, try to imagine the potential energy that is stored in it. When you are visiting the beach and you are walking along the shoreline looking for seashells, think about how much electricity could be produced with the water that is moving between your toes. The alternative energy source that we will focus on is tidal energy.

Tidal energy is the use of the sun and moon’s gravitational force. Some of the advantages of tidal energy are that it does not require any fuel, it is clean and it is renewable. It is also more predictable than wind energy and solar power. The stronger the tide is, the greater the electricity. However, there are a few disadvantages. Sometimes it can alter the ecosystem by changing the natural flow of the water. As long as proper measures are taken, this wouldn’t pose a great risk.

Tidal energy is a form of low-head hydroelectricity. The great thing about tidal energy is that the tides rise and fall in a consistent pattern. It is also a free alternative energy source once the system is built. Tidal energy is also a great alternative energy source as far as the environment is concerned. It produces no greenhouse gases. It may even protect the coastlines against storms that produce high tides. It could very well protect the houses that are at risk of being flooded because of those high tides.

There are three types of tidal energy. The first one is tidal stream systems. These systems usekinetic energy of moving water to power turbines. The second one is barrages. The use potential energy and they are basically dams across the full width of a tidal estuary. The third is tidal lagoons. These are constructed as self contained structures. These can be configured to generate continuously.

At the moment tidal energy may be more expensive than any other alternative energy source or conventional energy source. The more it is used, the less it could cost. There will always be access to tidal energy because there will always be bodies of water. It would be an alternative resource that you wouldn’t have to worry about losing. As long as we protect the water and don’t pollute it with other things, we could benefit from this greatly.

References

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tidal_power

http://www.tidalfluxenergies.com/