What is renewable energy?

We’ve all heard of solar panels and wind turbines, but renewable energy covers more than that. It is energy from any source that is naturally replenished when used. Often called ‘renewables’, ‘green energy’, ‘microgeneration’ or ‘sustainable energy’, the main sources of renewable energy for the home are:

  1. energy from sunlight
  2. heat from the earth, the air or water sources
  3. plants grown for fuel (biomass or biofuels)
  4. waste
  5. the movement of water (known as hydro) and wind.

There are lots of different technologies available – usually used to produce electricity or to generate heat.