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1 Formation of Coal The coal that we use today comes from the remains of plants in swamps millions of years ago After much time and pressure, plant remains.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Formation of Coal The coal that we use today comes from the remains of plants in swamps millions of years ago After much time and pressure, plant remains."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Formation of Coal The coal that we use today comes from the remains of plants in swamps millions of years ago After much time and pressure, plant remains in swamps change to peat and then eventually to coal

2 2 Coal Usage The majority of coal in the US is used to generate electricity

3 3 US Coal Production

4 4 Pros of Coal 1.Most abundant fossil fuel 2.We have enough to last over 200 years at current rate of consumption 3.Fairly inexpensive

5 5 Cons of Coal 1.Creates tons of air pollution from sulfur and carbon dioxide emissions 2.Strip mining destroys environment 3.Main source of acid rain

6 6

7 7 Formation of Oil Crude oil, or petroleum, comes from the remains of microorganisms that lived in ancient oceans or lakes Sediments accumulate on top of these remains, and after millions of years of heat a pressure they are converted into oil

8 8 Oil Traps Oil is usually found in a reservoir rock with high porosity and permeability (like sandstone) On top of the reservoir there must be an impermeable rock layer to trap the oil

9 9

10 10 Pros of Oil 1.Highly energy efficient 2.Easy to transport 3.Not too expensive…yet

11 11 Cons of Oil 1.Limited amount 2.Pollutes air with carbon dioxide emissions 3.Oil spills cause major environmental damage

12 12 Natural Gas Formation Natural gas is formed the same way as oil, some of the microorganism are converted into a liquid (oil) and others into a methane gas (natural gas) It is generally found in the same types of areas as oil

13 13 Natural Gas Usage and Production The majority of natural gas is used to heat buildings

14 14 Pros of Natural Gas 1.Cleanest of fossil fuels 2.Good for heating 3.US has a lot

15 15 Cons of Natural Gas 1.Produces greenhouse gases 2.Limited supply 3.Leaks can be dangerous

16 16 Alternate Energy Sources Solar Energy: The direct use of the sun’s rays to supply heat or electricity. FreeFree Non PollutingNon Polluting Unlimited SupplyUnlimited Supply Advantages: Disadvantages: Expensive EquipmentExpensive Equipment Backup Source needed for cloudy days.Backup Source needed for cloudy days. Colorado has excellent potential for solar power because of our over 300 days of sunshine each year. Xcel Energy offers electric rebates for installing solar systems.

17 17 Wind Energy: Experts estimate in years, wind power could provide 5-10% of US electricity. Difficulties: They require large tracts of landThey require large tracts of land Noise pollutionNoise pollution Colorado is one of the top wind producing states. Xcel energy offers an option for consumers to purchase wind energy at an extra cost. Wild Oats is the largest purchaser followed by Western Ski Resorts (ex.Vail and Aspen). Vail Resorts is also asking employees and guests to join the company's renewable energy effort by offering a free one-day ski lift ticket to anyone who purchases wind power for their residence for a year through Renewable Choice.

18 18 Nuclear Power: 7% of US Power Plant Energy is Nuclear. Disadvantage: Hazards with disposing nuclear wastes.Hazards with disposing nuclear wastes. Expensive to build safe power plants.Expensive to build safe power plants. Concern for an accident where radioactive material escapesConcern for an accident where radioactive material escapes In 2004 the US imported 81% of uranium required to fuel its 104 nuclear power reactors. The Chinese plan to build 30 new reactors by 2020 Russia, 24 by 2020 and India, 17 by No new reactors have opened in the US since 1973.

19 19 Hydroelectric Power: Power from falling water drives turbines that create clean electricity. Disadvantage: Not enough suitable sitesNot enough suitable sites The reservoirs fill up with sediment.The reservoirs fill up with sediment. Destroys river ecosystemsDestroys river ecosystems


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