The Differences Between Clean Energy, Renewable Energy, and Alternative Energy

To many people, the differences between "alternative energy," "renewable energy," and "clean energy," might not be obvious. But each term is unique and has its own individual definition. These three terms are not all exactly the same.

Alternative Energy

When we speak of alternative energy, we refer to sources of usable energy that can replace conventional energy sources (usually, without undesirable side effects). The term "alternative energy" is typically used to refer to sources of energy other than nuclear energy or fossil fuels.

Throughout the course of history, "alternative energy" has referred to different things. There was a time when nuclear energy was considered an alternative to conventional energy, and was therefore called "alternative energy." But times have changed.

These days, a form of "alternative energy" might also be renewable energy, or clean energy, or both. The terms are often interchangeable, but definitely not the same.

Renewable Energy

Renewable energy is any type of energy which comes from renewable natural resources, such as wind, rain, sunlight, geothermal heat, and tides. It is referred to as "renewable" because it doesn't run out. You can always get more of it.

People have begun to turn to this type of energy due to the rising oil prices, and the prospect that we might one day deplete available sources of fossil fuels, as well as due to concerns about the adverse effects that our conventional energy sources have on the environment.

Of all the different types of renewable energy, wind power is one which is growing in its use. The number of users who have some form of wind power installed has increased, with the current worldwide capacity being about 100 GW.

Clean Energy

"Clean energy" is simply any form of energy which is created with clean, harmless, and non-polluting methods.

Most renewable energy sources are also clean energy sources. But not all.

One such example is geothermal power. It may be a renewable energy source, but some geothermal energy processes can be harmful to the environment. Therefore, this is not always a clean energy. However there are also other forms of geothermal energy which are harmless and clean.

Clean energy makes the less impact on the environment than our current conventional energy sources do. It creates an insignificant amount of carbon dioxide, and its use can reduce the speed of global warming - or global pollution.

As you can see, alternative energy, renewable energy, and clean energy are very similar. But it is important to know that there are differences.

There are many actions which can be taken, to help reduce the greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. Some of these steps can be taken in your own home. Many clean energy solutions can can be easily installed, and some kits are quite affordable.

Carbon emissions and other forms of pollution are not only created by heavy industrial factories. They are created in the common household as well. Energy efficiency has become an important aspect of our lives.

It's important to start making changes now; if we want to save our planet for our children, for the flora and fauna of the Earth, and for the future of mankind. Clean energy, to be exact, can make a big difference.


Leadership Gap in the Green Market!

With projections of the creation of 5 million new green jobs, there is a striking leadership gap in the Green Jobs market. Growing numbers of people are reinventing their careers in this new market, so one has to ask, “Who’s going to lead?” Are our executives, consultants, and entrepreneurs prepared with the right tools, training, and skills to successfully manage and lead green business? How prepared are these leaders to achieve BOTH profitability and sustainability?

Those entering the green industry stand to be a part of one of the greatest business opportunities in recent history. Energy alone represents a multitrillion dollar global market. In addition, studies indicate growth in well-paying green jobs. The demand for well-trained people at all levels in organizations is high and what is needed is crucial business training with a green focused application.

A Green MBA is the way to go for Green Leaders who wish to position themselves for success.

A Green MBA provides people with real options and freedom to pursue career opportunities throughout the green sector. Businesses are calling for qualified professionals with the right business skills relevant to green sector issues. These skills include the business standards of effectiveness in leadership and communication and a solid understanding of business strategy, performance, and finance. A Green MBA also provides skills specific to the needs of the Green Economy including green marketing, green branding, and green leadership. These are the skills needed to help companies to earn and retain green and social credibility in the new green economy.

The potential business and individual opportunities of the Green sector are indisputable. Positioning oneself to maximize their marketability to green employers is priority number one and a Green MBA may just be the competitive leverage people need. As the demand for qualified professionals continues to grow, selecting the right degree program is imperative. The right Green MBA program stands to boost careers and position people to take advantage of this amazing opportunity.


7 Good Bad Or Ugly Green Energy Trends Which Will Affect Your Bottom Line

We all love Mother Earth. If the devil is in the details, applies here as it does in most areas of life and business, how do we move to the next step of a greener world? What does it really mean to your company to actually operate in a greener world, and how soon will it happen? Logically most companies will see some benefits (good), some drawbacks (bad) and some will face major problems (ugly).

Consider how the following seven strategic "green energy" trends will impact your industry and your business in particular.

  1. Bottom line benefit case studies from sustainable pioneers going green are starting to appear in the Wall Street Journal, other major business publications, and possibly your local newspaper.
  2. Technology can help. Website and software tools are available to calculate the carbon footprint for your company, as one of the first steps to understand the various aspects of instituting green for your company. That capability can help a company research, define and then estimate its carbon footprint. The ability to include its entire worldwide supply chain helps better plan for the transition to a greener carbon footprint. Basically this quantifies targeted emissions for reduction to some government mandated level for your industry or country.
  3. After estimating the carbon emission of your carbon footprint versus the mandated quantity, carbon tax can be estimated at a given carbon tax rate per ton. Soon to follow will be footnote disclosure and then recording the carbon footprint liability. This will be massive for some companies. The higher the carbon footprint quantity and the higher the tax rate, the higher the tax liability for targeted industries.
  4. Think of people in prior generations protesting the Vietnam War or chaining themselves to trees to prevent logging operations. Companies need to better understand the passion, even fervor, of green energy advocates who demand that business formulate and implement green initiatives.
  5. A "green washing" backlash is developing when clean energy advocates think corporate green claims are overstated. Remember, they define how green your activities must be, not your executives.
  6. You will soon see pressure from your larger customers for you to meet greener mandates they have put in place. If you want to continue doing business with a number of blue-chip companies, you will be meeting their goals of greener operations as part of their strategic planning. Since it is easier for corporate level executives and strategists to make a decision than for their suppliers to actually make those strategies work, be prepared.
  7. Many clean energy advocates are concerned about the backlash already building against going green. As more details of the magnitude and cost of proposed carbon tax legislation and the extent of its use of proceeds for Congressional leadership approved or non job creation purposes are apparent, a backlash against that Congressional leadership plan is building. To the extent that the job creation justification actually is used to fund a welfare system tax, backlash will accelerate.

Advocates see a much overdue environmentally transition. Other experts are concerned that the carbon tax being discussed will destroy more jobs than are created in the green sector. Whatever tax is enacted and undoubtedly revised, companies must plan and prepare for a range of conditions from strong benefits and opportunities to substantial, even massive, associated rising costs that such a tax will produce. Every industry and most businesses will see good, bad or ugly aspects from the greener world. How prepared are you?

Bottom line? - What is the cost of what you don't know?

Stop Profit Leaks Now. Apply this information to improve your profitability, re-engineer business models, and strengthen or gain competitive advantage in the marketplace. And apply the free Fiscal Test available at

From the author of the forthcoming book, 'Stick Out Your Balance Sheet & Cough: Best Practices for Long Term Business Health'.

From Gary W Patterson,
Copyright 2009


green energy News

Cool Web Site Listings