The first useful thing to ask oneself before creating ones own energy is:
"What do I really need?"
The reason this is important is obvious. It not only refines ones ideas but it eliminates waste.
Oil seems to be slowly over the next 20 to 40 years going extinct like the Dodo bird already did and many other species inevitably will. It falls upon each of us to make sure we don't go extinct as a species too.
It is in this survival of the human species idea that I am writing this article.
So I will make a list of energy available other than oil based or grown fuel other than trees.
1. The most plentiful energy worldwide appears to be solar energy which can be tapped either through solar cells for electricity or for heat through black hoses or other devices or through solar cookers to cook food slowly from concentrated sun. One can also use solar cells on the roof of ones vehicle to generate extra electricity for lighting ones home or powering ones electric vehicle. One can also use the sun for generating electricity to break down water through electrolysis into hydrogen and oxygen so one can use those as fuels. However, storing hydrogen is problematic(remember the Hindenburg). However, hydrogen can be used as it is made and provide a fuel that can be burned and the oxygen created will aid combustion.
2 Wind is a very plentiful energy maker worldwide and has been used in the form of sailing ships and windmills for thousands of years already to move people and goods, grind wheat and other grains provide power through belts and gears, and now to generate power. Many places on earth are increasing the amount of power generated by wind generators every day.
3. Water in dams and rivers can also generate electric power or through gears, belts and pulleys provide direct power for grinding or building or whatever one can adapt it to. Ocean waves are also a potential source of power though tapping it because of the rusting factor of waves and the power of storms on waves can be problematic.
4.water as a power source. As I mentioned in #1 through solar created electric power water can be broken down through electrolysis into its component parts of hydrogen and oxygen. These can be burned then as a fuel source like gasoline. The main problem with this is that if everyone converted to water as a fuel for the next 1000 years there might be no water left in the oceans because the hydrogen would have been all burnt up. The oxygen might remain in an oxidized form but I believe the hydrogen through burning turns into something else, maybe helium is one of the elements it might turn into through combustion. However, once enough hydrogen is converted to something else it could never return to being water for the oceans, the clouds and drinking. This could be a problem not in the short run of 100 years but it could end life on earth if mankind used up all the water to make hydrogen and oxygen and then burned them.
However, the advantage to burning hydrogen and oxygen is that no carbon monoxide, or carbon dioxide is formed during combustion because no carbon is present during the combustion.
5. If one needs to generate electricity without gasoline, diesel or food based fuels then one needs solar cells, wind generators, water for electrolysis to make hydrogen and oxygen, or one can use wood or coal to fuel for example a steam engine or steam turbine if a fuel of some kind is available to operate a steam engine or steam turbine. The steam engine or turbine could be connected to an electrical generator at 12 volts, 110 volts, 220 volts or whatever level of power you need in your country.
So to repeat there are many sources of fuel available on earth that one can use to generate electrical power that can be used for almost anything including running cars off of batteries. It would be possible to trailer, for example a wood burning or coal burning or water based hydrogen fueled boiler on your steam engine to generate power to run your electric vehicle(if that was legal where you lived).
In fact, where this is sufficient water steam based vehicles (like the stanley steamer) are possible anywhere on earth. There could even be four wheel drive models.
The biggest problem with steam engines is not only to they have to exhaust steam from the steam driven pistons but they work better with distilled water. Though any water can be used(except salt water) on steam engines most water might cause some calcium or other buildup.
I rode on steam driven trains in India in the 1980s and they worked great. It was an amazing experience. They are extremely powerful and at that time transported almost everyone who rode trains throughout India.
The advantage of steam at this time, of course will be the price of oil based products. However, I read something yesterday that said that because of all the problems right now all over earth that solar cells will be cost efficient compared to all other fuel sources to generate electric power within 5 years.
So just like the early 1900s we are in a severe energy source shift all over earth. The more efficiently we can all do this conversion the less millions that will die from starvation worldwide. It is estimated that 100 million people have been moved by the price of fuel and food to starvation. In other words 100 million people are slowly or quickly starving to death right now. And all of them RIGHT NOW don't have enough good food to maintain the health of their brains or organs or the same for their children RIGHT NOW. This isn't tomorrow. This is RIGHT NOW!
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