Friday - - ASK THE EXPERTS -

QI am in­ter­ested in study­ing about al­ter­na­tive en­ergy. What are the var­i­ous fields? ARe­serves

of fos­sil fu­els are fi­nite and not only can they not be re­placed but the cost of re­triev­ing them is get­ting pro­gres­sively higher and en­vi­ron­men­tally more dam­ag­ing.

A con­se­quence of global warm­ing has seen the me­te­oric growth of al­ter­na­tive en­ergy – en­ergy sources which do not use up the earth’s nat­u­ral re­sources or fos­sil fu­els and do not harm the en­vi­ron­ment. It is es­ti­mated that by 2030 al­ter­na­tive en­ergy will be a one tril­lion dol­lar in­dus­try.

Al­ter­na­tive en­ergy can man­i­fest it­self through var­i­ous me­dia, par­tic­u­larly wind, wa­ter and so­lar.

This growth in the al­ter­nate en­ergy sec­tor has sparked an ar­ray of op­por­tu­ni­ties for many pro­fes­sion­als – even in fields such as real es­tate and sales.

The core of the in­dus­try and the tech­nol­ogy’s growth con­tin­ues to be so­lar in­stallers, who help set up and main­tain the pan­els that are in­creas­ingly ap­pear­ing on rooftops.

Build­ing en­vi­ron­men­tally sus­tain­able build­ings re­quires ex­per­tise across a range of pro­fes­sions – from ar­chi­tects and en­gi­neers to car­pen­ters and heavy equip­ment oper­a­tors.

Wind tur­bines are not only a fast-grow­ing in­dus­try in clean en­ergy – it is the sin­gle fastest-grow­ing oc­cu­pa­tion in United States.

The grow­ing de­mand for cars that both save money and cre­ate less pol­lu­tion has in­creased the de­mand for skilled en­gi­neers. In fu­ture en­gi­neers will be re­quired to ap­ply their cre­ativ­ity and in­tel­li­gence to de­sign en­ergy-ef­fi­cient, high­per­for­mance ve­hi­cles that do not emit car­bon emis­sions and pol­lute the en­vi­ron­ment.

The Ore­gon In­sti­tute of Tech­nol­ogy, MIT, Stan­ford and UC Berke­ley all have pro­grammes in re­new­able en­ergy.

You could also ex­plore Ecotech, the only col­lege in USA fully ded­i­cated to al­ter­na­tive en­ergy stud­ies.

In UK, Uni­ver­si­ties renowned for al­ter­na­tive en­ergy pro­grammes would in­clude Ex­eter, Aberdeen, Brunel and Not­ting­ham.

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