Your cookie preferences

We use cookies and similar technologies. You can use the settings below to accept all cookies (which we recommend to give you the best experience) or to enable specific categories of cookies as explained below. Find out more by reading our Cookie Policy.

Select cookie preferences

Skip to main content

Renewable energy sources

Renewable energy sources

When it comes to renewable energy, there are several ways it's done — you can even generate your own renewable energy at home.

Read up on the most common types of green and renewable energy in the UK in this Uswitch guide.

Compare energy prices here

It's a good idea to compare energy regularly to see what the latest prices mean for you, even though there are fewer deals available. Enter your postcode to get started.

Wind energy

The UK has invested quite a bit in large-scale wind energy production, which can be done in both on land and off the coast, and you've likely seen the tall turbines throughout the country's landscape. A collection of these turbines is referred to as a wind farm.

Wind farms are a popular form of renewable energy in the UK because they have a very low carbon footprint to run, and they are incredibly powerful at generating energy. In fact, a recent Telegraph article reported that wind farms had generated half of all of the UK's renewable energy.

Read more, including the pros and cons of wind energy.


Referred to also as hydroelectricity or hydropower, this is a popular renewble energy generation choice of green energy suppliers.

The advantages of hydropower as a form of green energy is that is well suited to wet climates as found in the UK and, depending on the method, can be relatively maintenance free.

Solar energy

Perhaps the most commonly known way to generate renewable energy, solar energy refers to when specialised panels are used to convert sunlight into electricity.

Solar energy is also the most likely form of home renewable energy, which an estimated 4 million homes having solar panels.

Read more about solar panels and solar energy here.

Tidal energy

Also referred to as tidal power or wave energy, tidal energy is a relatively new form of renewable energy generation.

This method simply utilises the gravitational pull that already exists between the Earth, moon and sun to move millions of gallons of ocean water around the world in a predictable way in the form of tides.

It is a similar method to hydroenergy generation, except that it can utilise the fact that the water moves in two directions, instead of having a single flow (as a rive has a one-way flow).

Anaerobic digestion

A lesser known form of renewable energy generation, but one used by many green energy suppliers nonetheless, anaerobic digestion is the process of turning biodegradable waste such as cow manure into energy.

The product of this can be used directly as fuel, or can be upgraded into biomethane.


This term refers to the process of burning organic material to produce energy — the most common one being burning wood to create heat in your home.

Whether this qualifies as a green energy source is debateable — as it produces carbon emissions. However, because materials such as wood are considered renewable, it qualifies as such.

Read more …

Share this article