move beyond
environment: reducing your carbon footprint

Brief Summary: In this video we how different sources of energy generate CO2 and other air pollution. Although there is debate about the influence of CO2 on global warming, most scientists believe that its impact is verifiable as evidenced by the rising levels of CO2 in the atmosphere.

Keywords: CO2 emissions, global warming, solar energy, solar thermal power, energy content of fuels, pounds of CO2 per million BTU of energy, pounds of C02 per kilowatt.

Detailed Description: All fossil-based fuel generate CO2 emissions. It is a natural by product of burning a carbon-based fuel, which includes, gas, oil, coal, and even wood. In addition to CO2, carbon based fuels generate other pollutants. Coal burning power plants are the leading source of air pollution and generate annually:

  • 10,000 tons of sulfur dioxide (SO2), which causes acid rain that damages forests, lakes, and buildings.

  • 500 tons of small airborne particles, which can cause chronic bronchitis, aggravated asthma, and premature death

  • 10,200 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx). NOx leads to formation of ozone (smog) .

  • 720 tons of carbon monoxide (CO).

  • 220 tons of hydrocarbons, volatile organic compounds (VOC), which form ozone.

  • 170 pounds of mercury,.

  • 225 pounds of arsenic.

For heating, most homes use either natural gas or oil. Natural gas is the better of the two. For every 3 barrels of oil not used for heating or cooling, it reduces CO2 emissions by 1 ton. When you take that average and multiply it by the number of homes worldwide that heat with oil it is in the order of billions of tons. So a reduction of 25% by every home in CO2 would have a large impact in reducing global warming. To see current atmospheric and global trends in CO2 you can use this link: global carbon dioxide levels

Atmospheric CO2 data

availabel soon screen

Energy Content of Fuels
Coal 25  million BTU/ton
Crude Oil   5.6 million BTU/barrel
Oil     5.78 million BTU/barrel = 1700 kWh / barrel
Gasoline    5.6 million BTU/barrel (a barrel is 42 gallons)
Natural gas liquids   4.2 million BTU/barrel
Natural gas  1030 BTU/cubic foot
Wood     20 million BTU/cord
CO2 Pollution of Fossil Fuels: Pounds of CO2 per million BTU of energy:
Coal            208 pounds
Oil 164 pounds
Natural Gas 117 pounds
Electrical Generation: Pounds of CO2 per 1,000 kWh, at 100% efficiency
Coal Fired Generation 709 pounds
OIl Fired Generation 559 pounds
Natural Gas Generation 339 pounds
1 million BTU = 293 kWh



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