One of the problems with current energy usage is that it is highly inefficient and vast quantities of energy are wasted. If people were able to recover lost and wasted energy, efficiency levels would rise dramatically.
Cogeneration is a method for recovering heat
so that it can be reused. Through this process, 10 to 40 percent of energy that is now wasted by industry could be recovered.
One method of cogeneration is to use the steam from a factory operation to run a turbine and generate electricity. Another option is to use heat that is released for heating a fish tank, growing food, or warming water.
Energy could also be recovered from biomass. Natural gas arising from a landfill could be captured and used as a source of energy. Through anaerobic digestion, methane could also be acquired from sewage.
Another way to recover energy is to burn the biomass. Burning natural products such as sugar produce useful materials that can be used for other purposes.
Some people have also burned garbage to generate heat. In Sweden, garbage is burned to heat homes. In Milan, Italy, burned garbage
generates electricity used to run streetcars and subways.
In addition to lowering costs through improving efficiency, recovering energy would also have the benefit of decreasing pollution. This would produce favorable effects on the environment.