Environmental Biology (Enegery Source Comparison Homework)

Use your textbook, class notes, and web sites – to answer the questions. Also use a set of graphs & info given in a separate document (Attached). Be sure to look at all the information before answering the questions. No energy source is perfect except the natural one that plants & animals use – the sun. If we lived as simply as animals we would not need other fuels. But humans are creative and like to invent all kinds of new ways to live. The big question of our time is – How can we be happy and creative, using energy while preserving the natural system that keeps us alive? (To be answered in the last question)

Fossil fuels are an intense energy source that has made the world what it is today – for good and for bad.

  1. DEFINE FOSSIL FUEL and List 5 different types of fossil fuels:
  2. List 6 problems of fossil fuels:
  3. A single uranium fuel pellet the size of a fingertip contains as much energy as 17,000 cubic feet of natural gas, 1,780 pounds of coal or 149 gallons of oil. Which fuel would damage less habitat & why?
  4. Find online -About how many acres of windmills would it take to the same amount of power as one nuclear power plant? __________ About how many acres of solar panels? _____________
  5. Compare the waste pollution of nuclear power versus coal power. Include types and amounts.
  6. Dangerous? Compare the number of people who die each year from ever terawatt-hour of energy of nuclear power __, coal, ______, wind______________, gas________________,oil ______.
  7. Wildlife habitat & forest destruction is a major global concern. Which energy sources might be worst and best for preserving nature? Explain your answer – don’t forget mining the materials, land taken and transport. (see graphs)
  8. Describe and compare the following nuclear power types and their present use.

A. Fission reactor,

B.breeder reactor,

C. thorium reactor,

D. fusion reactor.

  1. Reducing the NEED for energy MUST be the TOP priority. This should be focused primarily on transportation and industry as they use the most power. List 5 ways to reduce energy in these sectors. Be sure to include reducing human population.
  2. Explain how stopping fuel subsidies and raising the cost of fossil fuels could help preserve the environment.
  3. To keep 7-9 billion people alive and not destroy our system, we will need to greatly reduce the environmental destruction caused by the use of fossil fuels and other energy sources. Every alternative has problems too but need to be used where possible.

A. Solar needs LOTS of sun and surface area. In which environments would solar power be the best choice – give 3 examples?

B. Wind needs LOTS of wind and surface area. Where would wind power be the best choice? give 3 examples.

C. Nuclear is very concentrated power. Where might nuclear be best? give 3 examples.

D. Where is hydroelectric best? give 3 examples. What are some problems with this power?

  1. No energy source is perfect except the natural one that animals use too – the sun. If we lived as simply as animals we would not need other fuels. But humans are creative and like to invent all kinds of new ways to live. The big question of our time is:

“How can we be happy and creative while preserving the natural system that keeps us alive?”

Describe what the world could look like if we used far less energy, but still enough to keep us healthy – include topics below:

-Human population – environmentalists say that about 2 billion people would be a good healthy number for long-term sustainability. How could this be accomplished and maintained – in a “humane” way?

-Nature must be protected for our own survival. How can this happen?-

-What kind of housing would be best? –

-How would Agriculture methods change?

-Transport changes?

-City designs? (energy sources, building structures, etc.)

-Other