Sangareddy: An extensive analysis by the Indian Institute of Technology-Hyderabad (IIT-H) and researchers from Monash University, Australia has suggested geothermal energy – the use of the earth’s heat to generate power – is better than photovoltaic energy in terms of carbon dioxide emissions. The researchers also suggest that a combination of renewable energy technology must be adopted in this era of dwindling fossil fuel reserves and increasing greenhouse gas emissions.
This analysis was undertaken by Prof D Chandrasekharam, Department of Civil Engineering, IIT-H, and Prof G Ranjith Pathegama, Department of Civil Engineering, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia. Their Research paper was published recently in the reputed peer-reviewed journal Geomechanics and Geophysics for Geo-Energy and Geo-Resources.
Speaking about their analysis, Prof Chandrasekharam said, “While solar power does have benefits over conventional energy sources, is the hype surrounding its apparent ‘greenness’ justified? Solar power is far from the zero-emissions energy source that it is claimed to be.” Their study involved a lifecycle assessment of renewables. Around 10 tonnes of quartz is needed to manufacture solar cells that can generate 1 megawatt of electricity from Sun. 1 MWe of electricity can support about 20,000 people annually.