Why is green energy referred to as alternative energy?

Question by Oggy Boggy: Why is green energy referred to as alternative energy?
Wouldn’t it make more sense to call it “green,” “clean,” or “renewable” energy? Just what exactly is green energy an alternative to? Is it an alternative to global warming, dependency on fossil fuels, deforestation, depletion of the earth’s resources, extinction of several species, and acid rain? Is it an alternative to fighting wars over oil, oil lobbyists trying to run the show, and large corporations getting tax breaks and large subsidies? It doesn’t sound like an alternative to me; it sounds like a solution. What do you think?

Best answer:

Answer by Hug Your Horses
Any of those terms are suitable, although the term alternative is commonly used because green energy is an alternative to environmentally harmful energy sources.

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9 Responses to “Why is green energy referred to as alternative energy?”

  1. I think it’s because green energy is the alternative to what we are currently using as energy. The energy we use causes greenhouse gases, which then cause icebergs to melt, causing the water level to rise. With green energy, we can prevent the greenhouse gases, or significantly decrease them, from causing the water level to rise, along with many other environmentally dangerous things.

    It’s referred to an alternative to the current forms of energy we are using, I guess is what I’m trying to convey here.

  2. It’s about market research. Green is the new buzz word. I’m sure there are marketing people polling to see which words catch the attention of the viewers. It’s a great generic term which can mean anything without offending anyone. If we say clean energy then people may say what about clean coal, which is still just a theory. If we say renewable that may make people think of huge turbines or solar panels and many still think these are too expensive or ugly. If you toss global warming or climate change into the conversation, many will just tune out or start a debate. So, “green” seems to be the safest choice for now.

  3. yes and it is good cause it does not damage the planet as much as the normal one.

  4. Alternative seems to bring up the idea that it is not viable to what we already have. I’d guess the term was coined by some coal company exec.

  5. there called alternative because people think that because we usee fossil fuels more the green energy is plan B

  6. its been called that since the 70s when oil was incredibly cheap.
    places like the centre for alternative technology (CAT) in Wales and other ‘alternative’ types pioneered it, after a fall into complete disuse and zero research since the ’20’s.

  7. Reality has a Liberal Bias Reply December 31, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    Alternative to fossil fuels.

    You’ll see “renewable energy” and “cleantech” as well.

  8. green energy is an alternative to all enviromentally-harming enegies

  9. it’s so easy. it’s a renusable source. easy points.

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