How Green Energy Is Good for Human Health

Serving residential and business customers from Washington, DC, to New England and eastward to Ohio, Verde Energy has become a leader in providing energy backed by renewable sources. Verde’s focus is on providing sustainable energy supply options from sources like wind, solar, and hydroelectric power. In a time of increasing focus on the importance of individual and public health, the expansion of renewables means a decreasing reliance on traditional fossil fuel sources, whose pollutants have been shown to contribute to a wide range of health issues.

Health experts note that the types of energy sources used in a community play a major role in the health of the people who live there. Renewable energy harnessed from solar and wind farms lower the levels of pollutants in the air, thus lessening the amount of human-induced climate change and increasing overall human health and longevity.

One of the obstacles standing in the way of an adequate overhaul of the fossil fuel-based energy infrastructure is the lack of public education on the issue. With relatively few members of the public—and even relatively few legislators—fully aware of the influence of air quality and climate on human health, there has not, to date, been a widespread sense of urgency about tackling the problem at its root.

Renewable energy confers cost and health benefits

According to emerging research, the cleaner air that results from the use of renewable energy sources reduces energy costs even as it helps to reduce public health problems. One recent Harvard University study, based on a full cost-benefit analysis, reported that regions adopting clean energy sources that reduce carbon output can realize substantial aggregate monetary savings. Additionally, the Harvard study’s principal author notes that the public health benefits are fully on par with the climate benefits in a renewables-led energy economy.

Research based on computer modeling has shown that the build-out of wind farms, coupled with other sensible energy-efficient measures, is the best way to offset excess coal-fired power plant emissions, and thus the most achievable route to achieving real public health gains in terms of air quality.

The advantages of greening the Rust Belt

Studies have also shown that the assigned dollar value of public health benefits as a portion of energy costs is particularly high in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions.

A peer-reviewed study published in Environmental Research Letters in 2019 supported the idea that the Rust Belt, in particular, can receive a notably good return on investment in renewable energy sources, from the standpoint of energy cost efficiency, public health, and ability to contribute to the overall mitigation of climate change.

An estimated $4.7 billion in health benefits will accrue to states in the region by the year 2030, assuming they continue to maintain current renewable portfolio standards. And if the region were to increase its renewable mandates by just 19.5 percent, the public health benefits realized could amount to $13.5 billion.

The benefits of cleaner air

The good news, though, is that simply breathing cleaner air confers numerous health benefits on its own. A 2007 study issued by the United States Environmental Protection Agency projected that there would be 57,000 fewer American deaths annually if the United States could improve air quality enough to blunt the worst effects of climate change.

People who live in relatively pollution-free areas are more likely to experience a decrease in symptoms associated with allergies and asthma. They are less likely to have problems with digestion while having fewer risks of diseases affecting the heart, arteries, and pulmonary system. They will also likely experience healthier sleep patterns and more mental and emotional stability.

That’s why Verde Energy customers can feel secure in knowing that not only are they living a more energy-efficient green lifestyle, they are helping to increase the quality of life for themselves, their families, and their communities.