Renewables are increasingly emerging as the solution to bridge the energy production gap in large countries and in the world’s rural areas. And though wind, solar and hydro power rank as the best-known forms of "green" energy, the US Energy International Administration underlines the fundamental role played by another crucial resource in energy production: biomass. The EIA in fact states that biomass now covers 5% of US national energy needs. Of this energy 43% comes from vegetable waste from forests and trees, 46% from so-called biofuels (mostly ethanol) and about 11% from municipal waste processing. And energy is not only obtained from biomass via combustion, the methane gas produced from the ground and by waste can also be used in the industrial production of electricity.
And often green energy and the installation of micro power generation systems garners considerable support from crowdfunding – this via web platforms that present the project and that seek funding. This is underlined by the European Portal for Energy Efficiency on Buildings, which for example mentions the ECOMILL platform created by the Italian Bocconi University Milan researcher Chiara Candelise. "Ecomill - the platform states - promotes investments in innovative projects and start-ups in the energy and environment sector, including renewable energy and distributed generation, energy efficiency, energy networks (smart grids, district heating), sustainable mobility, biotechnology, environmental services. In addition to working with the third sector."
To date there are 29 platforms of this type active worldwide and via which funding for green projects can be requested. And the opinion is growing that this method could change the very way research and development is carried out.