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The spice trade between India and Europe was the main catalyst for the Age of Discovery.

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What are the benefits of renewable energies—and how do they improve our health, environment, and economy? These gases act like a blanket, trapping heat.

Our median age of 37 makes Australia one of the youngest countries and is good news for the economy but there are so many other pressures we won't even notice. The Economist offers authoritative insight and opinion on international news, politics, business, finance, science, technology and the connections between them. Ever wondered how much “nature” your lifestyle requires? You’re about to find out. The Ecological Footprint Quiz estimates the amount of land and ocean area required to sustain your consumption patterns and absorb your wastes on an annual.

In the United States, about 29 percent of global warming emissions come from our electricity sector. Carbon dioxide CO2 is the most prevalent greenhouse gas, but other air pollutants—such as methane—also cause global warming. Different energy sources produce different amounts of these pollutants.

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To make comparisons easier, we use a carbon dioxide equivalent, or CO2e—the amount of carbon dioxide required to produce an equivalent amount of warming. In contrast, most renewable energy sources produce little to no global warming emissions.

The comparison becomes clear when you look at the numbers. Burning Our economy gas for electricity releases between 0. Different sources of energy produce different amounts of heat-trapping gases.

As shown in this chart, renewable energies tend to have much lower emissions than other sources, such as natural Our economy or coal. Increasing the supply of renewable energy would allow us to replace carbon-intensive energy sources and significantly reduce US global warming emissions.

For example, a UCS analysis found that a 25 percent by national renewable electricity standard would lower power plant CO2 emissions million metric tons annually by —the equivalent of the annual output from 70 typical MW new coal plants [ 4 ].

Improved public health The air and water pollution emitted by coal and natural gas plants is linked with breathing problems, neurological damage, heart attacks, cancer, premature death, and a host of other serious problems. The pollution affects everyone: Wind, solar, and hydroelectric systems generate electricity with no associated air pollution emissions.

In addition, wind and solar energy require essentially no water to operate and thus do not pollute water resources or strain supplies by competing with agriculture, drinking water, or other important water needs.

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Biomass and geothermal power plants, like coal- and natural gas-fired power plants, may require water for cooling. Hydroelectric power plants can disrupt river ecosystems both upstream and downstream from the dam.

However, NREL's percent-by renewable energy study, which included biomass and geothermal, found that total water consumption and withdrawal would decrease significantly in a future with high renewables [ 7 ]. A relatively small fraction of US electricity currently comes from these sources, but that could change: In fact, a major government-sponsored study found that clean energy could contribute somewhere between three and 80 times its levels, depending on assumptions [8].

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And the previously mentioned NREL study found that renewable energy could comfortably provide up to 80 percent of US electricity by Jobs and other economic benefits Two energy workers installing solar panels. Solar panels need humans to install them; wind farms need technicians for maintenance.

This means that, on average, more jobs are created for each unit of electricity generated from renewable sources than from fossil fuels. Renewable energy already supports thousands of jobs in the United States. Inthe wind energy industry directly employed overfull-time-equivalent employees in a variety of capacities, including manufacturing, project development, construction and turbine installation, operations and maintenance, transportation and logistics, and financial, legal, and consulting services [ 10 ].

Other renewable energy technologies employ even more workers. The hydroelectric power industry employed approximately 66, people in [ 13 ]; the geothermal industry employed 5, people [ 14].

Increased support for renewable energy could create even more jobs. The Union of Concerned Scientists study of a percent-by renewable energy standard found that such a policy would create more than three times as many jobs more thanas producing an equivalent amount of electricity from fossil fuels [ 15 ].Breaking news on the economy, inflation, growth domestic product (GDP), nation's debt and financial news, as well as coverage on health care, the energy sector and more.

McKinsey Global Institute Our mission is to help leaders in multiple sectors develop a deeper understanding of the global economy. The economy of India is a developing mixed economy. It is the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP and the third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP).

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The country ranks th in per capita GDP (nominal) with $2, and nd in per capita GDP (PPP) with $7, as of After the economic liberalisation, India achieved % average GDP growth annually. United States - Quarterly Data; Data Series Back Data 2nd Qtr 3rd Qtr 4th Qtr 1st Qtr 2nd Qtr ; Employment Cost Index ().

Learn about global warming and the consequences to our environment from increased wildlife extinction rates to acidic oceans and polluted air.

Your Economy. Your definitive source of economic data about business establishments, jobs, and sales across the United States.

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