The Sun, the brightest light in our firmament, which once disappears on the horizon, reveals the infinity of stars that lie at immeasurable distances for us.
The Sun, one more star among the trillions estimated to exist within the two trillion galaxies that we think there are in our observable universe. Despite its insignificance, the Sun means everything to us. Thanks to him we exist and surely because of him, at the height of his life, any sign of life will be erased from the face of the Earth.
The Sun, a solution to many problems
The Earth revolves around this star, as well as our daily life and our lifestyle. Directly or indirectly, it is our main source of energy, despite the fact that we take advantage of an infinitesimal part of its potential. And it is estimated that the energy received by the Earth's surface from the Sun is 4,500 times our consumption. In other words, just by using a tiny part of the heat that the Sun gives us, our energy problems would be history.
Although we think about the beginning of the development of solar energy in the last quarter of the 20th century, especially as a result of the oil crisis, its origin dates back years. In ancient times, this type of energy had already been used for different purposes, but without a doubt, the most ambitious attempt was by an American engineer named Frank Shuman. He designed and built what we can consider as the first solar power plant in history in 1913 in Egypt, as we are told here.
However, his project was much larger and more ambitious, coming to plan to occupy an area of 52,600 km2 of the African desert, with the purpose of turning it into a highly productive orchard.
Unfortunately, at that time, the First World War broke out and his project was truncated. Furthermore, at that time, oil and coal were more than abundant, so the project was not resumed. A real misfortune, since surely, if the project had been carried out, it would have been an energy revolution that would have saved us many headaches.
Other solutions to the hecatomb
Instead, here we are, on the edge of the abyss. The threat of global warming looms over us, and in addition to investing in green energy, we should explore other avenues. Technology offers us ways to save energy, for example, with the use of Big Data. That is, the data that we generate in our daily lives as explained here. This massive data reflects the way we use technology, be it from traveling by public transport, to the hours you use the internet. Therefore, knowing our habits perfectly, strategies can be designed to use energy more conveniently.
On the other hand, education is also essential. Each of us should be aware of the impact of our way of life on nature. This term is known as the ecological footprint, which we talked about earlier. In the case of Mexico, for example, the ecological footprint exceeds 3 hectares, that is, it would take more than 3 planets like Earth to supply us if everyone led the same lifestyle as Mexicans. Of course, there are much more extreme cases such as the US, Qatar or the United Arab Emirates, whose consumption would be equivalent to more than 7 lands.
The future is presented with lights and shadows. On the one hand, there are countries that are making more and more efforts to avoid global warming, such as China, although it is not enough. What is truly worrying is that the current leader of the world's main economy, Donald Trump, is completely belligerent in taking measures against climate change, which he calls a "tall tale." It is no longer time for half measures, we have solutions at our fingertips. Our life and economy have to turn before the celestial body that illuminates us every day; everything begins and everything ends in the stars, not in vain, we are made of stardust.