The United States’ continued build out of renewable energy, is giving rise to tensions between competing environmental interests. One such conflict is between constructing more renewable energy infrastructure and the ecological damage that comes with it.
Renewable energy is needed more now than ever as the U.S. continues to rely heavily on fossil fuels. Most domestic greenhouse gas emissions are still caused by burning coal, natural gas, and hydrocarbons. Despite a seven percent drop in global carbon dioxide emissions in 2020 due primarily to the COVID-19 pandemic limiting transportation emissions, these numbers figure to rise again as pandemic restrictions are lifted and travel resumes. Switching from fossil fuels to renewable energy will mitigate water and air pollution, excessive water and land use, ecological loss, public health concerns, and climate change.