8. Written by José Santiago, Digital Content Specialist, Public Engagement , World Economic Forum. (n.d.). 15 quotes on climate change by world leaders. Retrieved December 04, 2017, from https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2015/11/15-quotes-on-climate-change-by-world-leaders/
7. Jacobson, M. Z., & Delucchi, M. A. (2011). Providing all global energy with wind, water, and solar power, Part I: Technologies, energy resources, quantities and areas of infrastructure, and materials. Energy Policy, 39(3), 1154-1169. doi:10.1016/j.enpol.2010.11.040
6. Global Climate Change. (2014, June 02). Retrieved December 02, 2017, from https://climate.nasa.gov/
5. Extreme Weather. (n.d.). Retrieved November 11, 2017, from http://nca2014.globalchange.gov/highlights/report-findings/extreme-weather#intro-section-2
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3. Delucchi, M. A., & Jacobson, M. Z. (2011). Providing all global energy with wind, water, and solar power, Part II: Reliability, system and transmission costs, and policies. Energy Policy, 39(3), 1170-1190. doi:10.1016/j.enpol.2010.11.045
2. Clean Cities Alternative Fuel Price Report. (2017, October). Retrieved December 02, 2017, from https://www.afdc.energy.gov/publications/search/keyword/?q=alternative fuel price report
1. Carbon dioxide concentration | NASA Global Climate Change. (2017, May 17). Retrieved November 20, 2017, from https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/carbon-dioxide/
In terms of cost, availability, CO2 emissions, and general pollution, alternative fuels will be a significant improvement over what we currently use. As seen in the previous tables, cost for natural and clean energy will continue to decrease and fossil energy cost will continue to rise. It will continue to rise because fossil fuels are not renewable and they are being depleted quickly. While the fossil fuels are becoming scarcely available, wind-solar-and water are everywhere; no matter how much we use today, the same amount will be available in the future. As far as CO2 emissions are concerned,
of the prices are increasing. conventional fuels.
As indicated by Table 1, most delivered. Social cost is included for
prices for the most used fuels. *This table shows the price per kWh
*This table shows recent retail
Table 1: Table 2:
When compared to current fuel- gas, diesel, coal, etc.-the future cost of alternative fuels will be cheaper than fossil fuels. Alternative fuel prices are decreasing as fossil fuel prices are increasing as shown by Table 1 and Table 2 below.
According to Jacobson and Delucchi, in 2011 the total power required to satisfy all end users was approximately 12.5 trillion watts (TW). They predicted that by 2030 the world would require almost 17 TW in power. They also reported that wind energy worldwide can produce 1700 TW, water energy combined (tidal, hydroelectric, and wave) worldwide can produce 8.3 TW, and solar energy can produce 6500 TW worldwide 7. These numbers clearly meet the power requirements. These fuels can be used to power EVs. As far as the abundance of roadways, roadway power would not be practical in all locations. It would perform best if it was implemented on major highways. Installing and transitioning to these alternative methods of energy would be costly, but as demand increases the cost would decrease.
A question that arises when discussing alternative fuels is: where will the energy come from? There are several ways we can produce clean energy by utilizing the planet’s natural and renewable resources. One resource is wind. Wind turbines are powered by the speed of the wind blowing over the blades causing them to turn which rotates a mechanism attached to a generator, in turn producing electricity. Wind turbines can be used to power an individual home, wind farms can be connected to a grid to power a large area, or can be placed off-shore to harvest higher power produced by strong off shore winds. Most turbines can produce power from relatively low wind speeds, but faster wind = more power. Also, the turbines have a fail-safe shut off when wind speeds are too high to prevent damage from storms. Another alternative fuel source is water. Water power can be harnessed in number of ways including tidal, hydroelectric, and wave. Solar power is another renewable energy source. Solar panels turn the sunlight into energy. When the aforementioned fuel sources are not feasible (cloudy and rainy locations-no solar power, locations with little to no wind, and/or locations that don’t have large bodies of flowing water- no water power) there is another method for electricity generation for vehicles: roadway power- using electromagnetic fields generated by roadways. This concept is still in its infancy. A conceptual design and analysis created by researchers Deng, Jia, and Zhang explains how roadway power would function: powering coils would be buried beneath the road and electronic vehicles (EVs) would have a pickup coil installed to collect energy as the EV passes from one section to the next, giving EVs virtually limitless range 4. These examples are just a few of many alternative resources for electricity and fuel for vehicles. Additionally, all said examples are widely abundant across the globe.
According to NASA, in 2005 the CO2 levels were at 378.21 parts per million (ppm), and the most recent measurement was taken in October of 2017 with levels rising to 407.06 ppm 1. The CO2 that we are producing comes from industrial factories, power plants, and burning fossil fuels like gasoline, coal, diesel, propane, etc. So, what can we do to help reduce our impact on climate change? One way is to change the way we obtain and use power. We can greatly diminish the use of fossil fuels by switching to alternative power sources. Some examples for generating power include wind, solar, water, and even using the roadways to generate power. Due to the complexity and detail with these sources of energy, only wind will be discussed in depth with just a brief mention of the other types of energy. In this paper the following topics will be discussed: alternative fuel sources for vehicles, abundance, cost, availability, CO2 emissions, and general pollution. The information presented in this paper was obtained from reputable sources including scientific journals, peer reviewed journals, and government owned websites, with minimal personal opinions/bias.
“There’s one issue that will define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other, and that is the urgent threat of a changing climate.”—Former President of the United States, Barack Obama 8. Climate change is a very complex and many-sided topic, and it is gaining recognition in the scientific community. The world is getting warmer, the climate is changing. Most scientists agree that the climate is changing, however some scientists are in denial that human activity is the cause for the dramatically increasing changes. According to NASA, ice is melting fast: Arctic ice is melting at a rate of 13.2% per decade and land ice (Greenland/ Antarctica) is disappearing at a rate of 127 Gigatons per year ±39 Gigatons 6. In addition to rapidly melting ice, among other consequences, the weather is wreaking havoc and the rate of serious weather-related disasters is steadily increasing as well. Instances of terrible heatwaves, heavy downpours, floods, hurricanes, winter storms, tornadoes, and other natural disasters are getting worse. For example, back in 2011, Oklahoma and Texas experienced a record breaking heatwave and drought: 100 days over 100°F. Those high temperatures for that length of time were the highest ever recorded since reliable record keeping began in 1895. This drought led to over $10 billion in agricultural losses according to the National Climate Assessment in 2014 5. These are just a few examples of how the climate is changing. There are strong links to human activity pushing climate change forward, for example: the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has dramatically risen over the past 70 years. As shown in the graph below (obtained from NASA.gov), the levels of CO2 have had a natural oscillation of highs and lows. However, these levels have skyrocketed since the 1950’s 1.
Can We Save the Planet with Alternative Fuels?
December 11, 2017
General Chemistry II Extra Credit
Can We Save the Planet with Alternative Fuels?