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Published byDominic Gardner Modified over 7 years ago
The Sustainable Energy International Youth Competition
Introduction to Alternative Energies
Part 1 About oil use and what is left
Earth as seen from space at night What is wrong with this picture? What we can learn from the above picture is the immense utilization of energy
Another way to conceive the utilization of energy: Tracking the flight of airplanes (collected information from around the world) Earth as seen from space at night
How much oil is left?
The picture above and the former diagram indicate that there are still extensive reservoirs of oil around the world
Part 2 Sustainability and the Ecological Footprint
Sustainability sustainability is: "Meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs." (Brundtland Report, 1987) Sustainability is an economic, social, and ecological concept. It is intended to be a means of configuring civilization and human activity so that society and its members are able to meet their needs and express their greatest potential in the present, while preserving biodiversity and natural ecosystems, and planning and acting for the ability to maintain these ideals indefinitely. Sustainability affects every level of organization, from the local neighborhood to the entire globe.biodiversity
There is no place on earth which is not affected by human activity Our Ecological Footprint - the price that society is paying
Population Growth 1871 - 1.5 billion people 1950 - 2.5 billion people 2010 - 7 billion people Still, only 2% precent of the earth surface is constructed area The entire world population can be housed in Texas in spacious apartments Can we deduce that in our wide open earth there is enough space for all of us and for future generations?
What are the needs for human existence (beyond housing)? Lands - for food and carbon fixation Forests - for carbon fixation, paper supply, recreation Mining areas -for the supply of raw materials And many more uses
Natural Cycles In nature, one organism’s waste is a another’s resource, meaning, that waste does not accumulate Food stuff needed for all organisms is maintained Waste = Resource
CARBON CYCLE Traveljohn Natural Cycles - Biogeochemistry
CARBON CYCLE Natural Cycles - Biogeochemistry
NITROGEN CYCLE Natural Cycles - Biogeochemistry
WATER CYCLE Natural Cycles - Biogeochemistry
Since the industrial revolution, humans have not planned their production systems according to nature’s cycles Human intervention As a result, the waste of manufacturing processes was delivered to the environment: rivers, oceans, land & air As with living organisms, which interact with the environment-absorbing food stuff and releasing waste-states and cities consume resources and release waste
Nature’s purification systems States & cities recycling processes rely on Ecosystems services To carry out such services, we need large, open green space So, what is the size of the ground area needed for ecosystems services to operate?
The Ecological Footprint The Ecological Footprint is a measure of the strain on the Earth’s ecosystems induced by human activity The Ecological Footprint represents the area needed to supply our resources and absorb our wastes in the context of our current living standards
Calculating the Ecological Footprint Ecological Footprint calculations are based on two basic facts: 1. We can estimate the amount of our resources and of our wastes 2. Our resources and wastes can be converted into area units (since it is possible to calculate the area size needed to supply the resources and to eliminate the wastes)
Calculating the Ecological Footprint -All agricultural land and forests -Marine fishing zones -The land needed for power plants, and green biomass needed for carbon sequestration -Built land - covered with buildings, roads and the like, therefore can not supply biological services -Land needed for sustaining biodiversity
Country The world average shows a deficit of 0.3 Ha per person Ecological Footprint calculations Israel Holland India China USA Canada Egypt Japan Does a country have sufficient land to sustain the Ecological Footprint? Footprint (0.1 Ha/pop.) Available land (0.1 Ha/pop.) +51 35 56 96 72 10 14 42 14 123 6 7 15 55 3 5 5 -41 -35 -8 -5 -10 -32
Based on the current human demand, in about 20 years time, the earth will not be able to support the future human population Ecological Footprint calculations
6. Up until now, technological advancement has brought about a rise in consumption, leading to the growth of the ecological footprint Ecological footprint calculations Summary: 2. The world is in shortage of resources 1. In one year, humanity consumes what nature supplies in a 15 month period 5. Most western societies exploit third world ecological resources and the resources of future generations 4. Population growth rate is a major problem, but the effects of consumer society are an even more pressing problem 3. In the future, population growth will place an ever growing strain on resources
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