The history of civilization is the history of the invention of more and more new methods of converting energy, mastering its new sources, and ultimately increasing energy consumption.
A particularly notable increase in world energy consumption has occurred in the last 200 years since the beginning of the industrial age: it increased 30 times and in 2001 it reached 14.3 Gtce / year. A man in an industrial society consumes 100 times more energy than a primitive man and lives 4 times longer.
In the modern world, the generation of electricity is the basis for the development of basic industries that determine the progress of social production. In all industrialized countries, the rate of development of the energy sector exceeded the rate of development of other industries.
Why Has Electrical Energy Become So Important?
It is impossible to imagine life without electrical energy. Electric energy has invaded all spheres of human activity: industry and agriculture, science and space, our daily lives.
Such a wide distribution is explained by its specific properties:
the ability to transform into practically all other types of energy (thermal energy, mechanical energy, sound, light, etc.)
the ability to be transmitted relatively easily over long distances in large quantities
the enormous speeds of the electromagnetic process
the ability to adapt energy (voltage change, frequency).
the number of energy sources (nuclear power, solar power, etc.)
Importance of Electrical Energy in Industry
In industry, electrical energy is used both to drive various mechanisms and directly in technological processes. The work of modern communication facilities (telegraph, telephone, radio, television) is based on the use of electricity.
Without it, the development of cybernetics, computer technology and space technology would have been impossible.
Importance of Electricity in Transportation
Electricity plays a very important role in the transportation industry. Electric transportation does not pollute the environment. Electrified rail transport consumes a large amount of electricity, making it possible to increase the performance of roads by increasing the speed of trains, reducing the cost of transport and increasing fuel economy.
How Does Electrical Energy Affect the Environment?
At the same time, energy is one of the sources of adverse impact on the environment and human beings. Affects:
the atmosphere (oxygen consumption, gas emissions, humidity and solid particles),
the hydrosphere (water consumption, creation of artificial reservoirs, discharges of polluted and heated water, liquid waste),
the biosphere (emissions of toxic substances)
the lithosphere (fossil fuel consumption, landscape change).
Initially the negative impact of electrical energy on the environment did not cause much alarm among the general public.
However, in the mid-70s of the last century, various specialists found numerous data that pointed to strong anthropogenic pressure on the climate system. This pressure could lead to a global catastrophe with an uncontrolled increase in energy consumption.
Since then, no other scientific problem has attracted as much attention as the problem of the present, and especially the coming climate change.