Here is something that’s often underappreciated when it comes to drones and newer technology in general: they run on clean energy. Gone are the days when technology and progress came with a price against the environment. Technology has advanced enough that newer inventions do not give off harmful smoke, radiation, or even pollution. Most new technological marvels have even adopted solar or wind energy, making use of natural elements that do not further harm the ecosystem – and some in fact help repair them.
So what is there to say about drones and its effect in the environment? Well, delivery drones have been receiving praise as of late for being a transport that can rely solely on clean energy. Its brethren in the delivery business on the other hand, cannot say the same. Trucks still use fossil fuel to go through its deliveries, which while convenient still create havoc in the environment and the people around it. Delivery by drone though, gives off zero gas emissions that can harm the planet, as well as not give off harmful smoke that can be inhaled by people nearby.
With giant corporations and companies like Amazon starting to rely on drones to deliver their products, we may be seeing what the future looks like. A future where deliveries arrive at our door not via a smoke belching truck, but via a quiet and swift drone that runs on electricity. Drone use also makes traffic problems a thing of the past, removing the constant delivery vehicles that clog city streets. A delivery method via an air route is much more efficient, and it will take lesser time to arrive than by land.
Drones, compared to common land vehicles that run on fossil fuel, have a much better efficiency when it comes to fuel usage. A study in the US found that battery-powered drones consume less energy to deliver packages than what trucks use for the same distance. Taking the trucks completely off the streets would lead to fewer pollution sources, which can help the planet’s restoration process.
The delivery prowess and positives of drones also come with negatives, however. For one, drones cannot yet match the range of trucks, meaning they can only go at short distances for deliveries before refueling. This would mean that either only a small perimeter around a company’s warehouse can drones deliver, or the companies must build more storehouses that serve as launch points for these drones. Either way, it does not reach the scale of the old ways – for now. There’s also the size of the package itself that we need to worry about. Sure, a small package containing a mobile phone or a bag of groceries may not be a problem, but larger deliveries may not have drone capabilities in the near future.