Greener Grand Bahama

Greener Grand Bahama

It is evident that the Earth’s temperature is increasing drastically, and the Earth’s climate is changing for the worse. With these increasing global temperatures are favorable environmental conditions that increase the chances of extreme weather, and more relevant for the tropics, dangerous hurricanes like Hurricane Dorian. The use of fossil fuels, coal, and other forms of nonrenewable energy sources are the main contributors for this critical problem. Which is why we musts seek alternative forms of energy sources here in Grand Bahama.

Beneath layers of ancient rock are decayed plants and animals that are millions of years old. These organisms are rich in carbon and are what we refer to as fossil fuels. Most of our energy is obtained from fossil fuels, which includes coal, fuel oil, and natural gas, all of which are nonrenewable, and harmful to the environment. By burning these fossil fuels, there is a continuous input of Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, creating a direct link to global warming and climate change.

Because Grand Bahama Island is surrounded by water, it would be a great idea to use this abundant water as a source of energy through Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion. The sun heats up the surface of the water, creating a temperature difference between the water’s surface and deeper water. Ocean thermal energy conversion uses this temperature difference to generate electricity. The OTEC system is made of an evaporator, generator, pump, condenser, and turbine and working fluid that all work together to produce on going, environmentally friendly electricity.

Diagram of OTEC System (OTEC News)
Solar Panel with Bahamian Flag (Solar Magazine)

Solar energy is the harnessing of the sun’s heat and light to produce energy. Here in Grand Bahama, one thing we don’t lack is sunlight. Light from the sun falls onto a solar panel, and creates electric current through the process of the photovoltaic effect. For a high amount of energy, each panel can be linked together creating a solar array. Any electricity that is produced from the panels are in the form of direct current and is converted to alternating current using an inverter. After the electricity is converted, it is then used for local power or sent to an electrical grid.

With the rise of global temperatures, it is important that we seek alternative forms of energy generation. It should be of interest to all countries to discontinue the use of fossil fuels, in order to keep the Earth’s temperature below 1.5oC. If we fail to do so, we risk losing everything we know and love. We must combat this vexing problem! If we do not act now, we could be forced off our beautiful Grand Bahama Island. We must act now!