posted on Aug, 26 2009 @ 08:16 PM
I tend to agree with TheRedneck on this, let me put a elementary physics slant on it.
Think of the law of conservation of energy.
Anytime you introduce another variable into a system, something else has to change in the system.
The physical properties of a solar panel are different than the properties of the Earth's surface. Therefore, when you cover up ground with a solar
panel, you are changing the dynamic of how the sunlight interacts within the system. The amount of sunlight is not changed, but is converted into a
different form of energy(electrical vs. thermal).
Likewise, with the wind generator, (functionally solar as well, since wind is generated by thermal effects of sunlight), if you remove energy from the
windstream, and convert it to electricity, you are changing the winds interaction with the system right there.
The amount of solar energy that is cast on the Earth is determined by the conditions of our atmosphere and the structure of our solar system. The Sun
does not "make more" because we turn some of it into electricity.
As far as geothermal, there is thermal energy within the Earth, if you removed enough of it to the outside, the core would cool. Do we even have the
capabilty to remove that much heat from the core? Not now, but maybe someday.
So are we changing the system with renewable energy sources? YES. Is the change measurable? Sounds like a good doctoral thesis project for someone.
We need an uber geek with a few Cray supercomputers to model the solar interaction of the Earth with varying levels of solar energy converted to
electrical energy. In theory, it would be possible to functionally stop all weather on the planet, since the Sun creates the weather through thermal
energy transfer and conversion.
But will that happen, practically? We may find out someday in the far off future. The offsets from cleaner atmospheric conditions may negate a lot of
the increased electrical conversion. Also, most of the things we do with electricity convert it right back into heat. Your computer, tv, light bulbs,
electric range, coffe maker, all heaters.
The point of this whole schpiel is that we won't know until some very high-level simulations are done, and know even more when we do implement
widespread solar conversion.
[edit on 26-8-2009 by hotrodturbo7]