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Lecture 80

GGR202H5 Lecture 80: PDF-Chapter-15-ENV100

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Department
Geography
Course
GGR202H5
Professor
Nicole Laliberte
Semester
Spring

Description
Chapter!15!Fossil!Fuels! Energy Sources: •! Nonrenewable: o! Oil and natural gas (petroleum) o! Coal o! Alternative fossil fuels (tar sands, oil shales, shale gas) o! Nuclear energy •! Renewable/Replenishable/Inexhaustible: o! Biomass energy (wood, ethanol, energy-from-waste) • Hydropower o! Solar energy o! Wind Energy o! Geothermal energy o! Tidal and wave energy o! Chemical fuels (e.g., batteries; hydrogen) Energy resources can be renewable, inexhaustible, or nonrenewable •! Fossil fuels are nonrenewable – they are replenished, but not on a humanly accessible timescale. •! Mineral resources can be recycled, but energy resources cannot, because of the second law of thermodynamics. We are not in danger of running out of energy in the Earth system •! Earth’s energy “budget”: 174,000 terawatts o! A watt is one joule/second (1 J/s) o! A joule is 0.239 Cal o! A terawatt is a trillion (1012) watts •! Current human energy use: 500 exajoules/yr o! 500 x 1018 joules per year = 16 terawatts •! What is in question is the availability of energy that is available, economically affordable, socially acceptable, and environmentally benign. Developed nations consume more energy than developing nations ! 1! •! Industrialized nations traditionally: o! Use energy for transportation, industry, home/business and industrial needs o! Use much more fossil fuel than other forms of energy •! Developing nations traditionally: o! Use energy for industry but also subsistence activities, agriculture, food preparation o! Use much more manual energy, animal energy, and biomass energy than in industrialized nations A small percentage of the population is responsible for most of the energy use •! World energy use patterns: o! U.S.: 18% of energy use, but 4% of world population o! Canada: 2.6% of energy use, but <0.5% of world population !! This translates into our high per capita GHG emissions !! Canada #1 or #2 in per capita energy use (Why...?) •! Energy use globally is increasing 4x as fast as population •! Economic growth has traditionally correlated strongly with energy use •! 85% of current conventional energy = fossil fuel Fossil fuels include oil, natural gas, and coal •! Fossil fuels o! Oil o! Natural gas Petroleum o! Coal •! Petroleum formation: shallow marine environment •! Coal formation: terrestrial swamp environment Fossil fuels are indeed formed from fossils •! Fossil fuels we burn today were formed from organisms that lived 300–500 million years ago •! Produced when organic material decomposed in anaerobic conditions •! Little or no oxygen •! Bottoms of deep lakes, swamps, and shallow seas •! Organic matter heated, compressed, altered, and eventually •! converted into crude oil, natural gas, or coal = maturation over time Coal is the most abundant fossil fuel •! Coal = woody plant material, compressed and altered to form dense, solid carbon compounds •! Contains lignin, a tough constituent of plants •! Coal has a very long history of use ! 2! •! Romans used coal for heating in the second and third centuries in Britain; Chinese have used coal for 2,000–3,000 years •! Commercial mining began in the 1700s •! Coal and the steam engine drove the Industrial Revolution and the steel industry •! By the 1880s, people used coal to generate electricity There are different grades of coal •! Peat = organic material that is broken down anaerobically but remains wet, near the surface, and not well compressed (= organic soil) •! Abundant in Canada •! Four main grades of coal •! Lignite = least compressed; softest; lowest energy content •! Sub-bituminous •! Bituminous •! Anthracite = most compressed; hardest; highest energy content Coal is mined from the surface and underground •! Subsurface mining = underground deposits are reached by digging networks of tunnels deep underground •! Strip mining = heavy machinery removes huge amounts of earth to expose and extract the coal Oil is the world’s most-used fuel •! People have used solid forms of oil (i.e., tar) for thousands of years •! Modern extraction and use began in the 1850s •! First bottled and sold as a healing aid, but it is carcinogenic •! “Rock oil” used in lamps and as a lubricant •! First commercial oil well was in Pennsylvania in 1859, but the very first oil well was in Oil Springs, Ontario ! 3! Heat and pressure underground form petroleum •! Petroleum = oil + natural gas) •! Crude oil = a mixture of hundreds of different types of hydrocarbon molecules •! Formed 1.5–3 km underground •! Organic material, buried in marine sediments and transformed by time, heat, and pressure •! Contains lipids (waxes, fats) •! Refineries separate crude oil into components such as gas, tar, and asphalt •! Cracking, distilling Petroleum geologists infer the location and size of deposits •! Geologists map underground rock formations to figure out where new oil deposits are located •! Technically recoverable oil is the oil that could be extracted with current technology •! Economically recoverable oil recognizes the balance between the costs of extraction, transportation and current price of oil •! Proven reserve is oil that is known/identified and technologically feasible to remove with existing technology, and economically/commercially viable, and still under the ground We drill to extract oil •! Exploratory drilling = small, deep holes to determine whether extraction should be done •! Oil under pressure often rises to the surface •! Primary extraction is the initial drilling and pumping of oil •! Secondary and tertiary extraction uses solvents, water, or stream to remove additional oil; expensive •! We lack the technology to remove every bit of oil, but as prices rise, it becomes economical to reopen older wells Offshore drilling produces much of our oil and natural gas •! Drilling also takes place on the seafloor, mainly on continental shelves •! Platforms are either fixed or floating •! It can be hazardous to drill in very deep water ! 4! Natural gas is the fastest-growing fossil fuel in use today •! Natural gas consists primarily of methane (CH4) and varying amounts of other volatile hydrocarbons •! Can be liquid at ambient pressures and temperatures in subsurface reservoirs •! Provides 25% of global commercial energy consumption •! World supplies are projected to last at least 55 more years Natural gas has only recently been widely used •! First commercial extraction occurred in 1821 o
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