Difference Between Renewable Energy and Fossil Fuels

renewable energy vs fossil fuels

In this article from Linquip, we want to take a look at renewable energy vs fossil fuels. We will compare these two, point by point, and enable you to understand the difference between them. By the end of this article, you’ll know why these two are important and in what areas they differ from each other. And you’ll also understand why the world tries to go toward using more renewable energy and decrease the use of fossil fuels.

Comparing renewable energy vs fossil fuels?

Many people think the difference between these two are complicated, but in fact, it’s quite simple. The most important and somewhat obvious difference between renewable energy and fossil fuels is the average replenish time. So:

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1. Replenish Time and Availability

We all know that in order to have renewable energy, you use natural resources that are refilled constantly during an average human lifetime and are not about to end for a very long time such as these power types: solar, hydro, geothermal, wind, biomass, etc.
On the other hand, it takes rather a long time for fossil fuels to naturally replenish. These fuels are natural gas, oil, coal, etc.

When comparing renewable energy and fossil fuels, keep in mind that although renewable energy sources are likely to be there for a long time, they might not be available from time to time. For example, if you use solar panels and it’s cloudy out there, your set up will use the battery and the pre-stored power to do the job. The same goes for wind turbines as well when the wind is not blowing.

2. Costs

It’s interesting to know that since we don’t have to do much for renewable energy sources to replenish, they usually cost less than fossil fuels. Way back, people believed that using such energies cost a lot but nowadays with the advancement in technology and finding innovative ways of using renewable energy sources, they have become as affordable as fossil fuels and in most cases, even cheaper than using fossil fuels (think of solar panels for example and how they generate power with lower costs.) Plus, fossil fuels should be found and extracted and then they should be transported, hence they cost much more than using renewable energy. The only stage of using renewable energy that may cost more than fossil fuels is the setting up stage of the elements and devices that transfer the energy for your main use. The rest costs less (and sometimes free.)

3. Storing Renewable Energy vs Fossil Fuels

One of the points that make us lean a bit more toward fossil fuels is that they are easier to store (actually a lot easier to store) when compared to renewable energy sources. The rapid growth of technology has led us toward finding some alternatives for this problem but they are still not as advanced as they should and cannot be used widely yet.

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4. Environmental Effects

Using renewable energy enables you to reduce your carbon footprint significantly. One of the most important difference when comparing renewable energy vs fossil fuels is that the former is considered as “clean energy” and is much more environmental friendly than the latter. Renewable energy doesn’t pollute the air and the environment while fossil fuels usually release CO2 and other sorts of elements and materials, facing us with global warming. Using renewable energy (especially solar and wind power) will bring us a more clear and cooler air and enables us to breathe easier in the long run as a result of eliminating the amount of CO2 that is released into the air. Not to mention creating a better future for the next generations. And another extra advantage regarding this matter is that when you and other people start to pay more attention to renewable energy resources, it increases the demand for creating infrastructures suitable for using such resources and the government will invest more in this matter.

5. Demand

With the rising concerns about global warming, people are becoming more aware of the differences between renewable energy and fossil fuels and the steps they should take for eliminating their needs for using fossil fuels. In fact, in the past few years, the demand for renewable energy has been increased in the US. Although fossil fuels such as using natural gas are still leading the market, the increase in the demand for setups such as solar panels shows that there might be a hope that the demand for fossil fuels decrease throughout time. But for now, fossil fuels are still ruling the market.


When comparing renewable energy vs fossil fuels, we saw that the scale might lean toward using fossil fuels at the present time, but everything we do comes with a consequence and using fossil fuels are not an exception. We are used to using fossil fuels and in many cases, they might be more practical, but you simply can’t deny how they affect the environment. If we keep using fossil fuels, they will eventually run out as we mentioned above and we will be left with a place that is not suitable to live in due to the global warming and the damage we made to the earth.

Now you can easily understand the difference when comparing renewable energy vs fossil fuels. What do you think about these two? Comment below and let us know. And if you have any questions about renewable energy or fossil fuels, feel free to sign up on Linquip and ask our experts.


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