Being nice to the planet for a change
The sums are simple. You + burning fossil fuel = a well and truly messed up environment. And while it’s on page 1 of Saving the Planet for Dummies, it still generates a quarter of the UK’s greenhouse gasses. Good job some care enough to do something about it then.
Like those who brought about Biodiesel. Biodegradable and cleaner, biodiesel gives off up to 60% fewer harmful emissions than it’s older, dirtier brother diesel. It’s still only a small step, but there’s enough about it to help reduce climate change down the line. Take a look at this site for the finer facts.
F1 are also taking note and putting in the time to develop biofuel technology. Gold star for them too. If it’s up your street, hear more about Shell’s work on Biofuels here.
I’ll stop jabbering on about biofuel now and give something else its moment.
And that something is wind power.
Wind power’s up there when it comes to creating energy without giving the planet a physical rollicking. And the best bit of all about wind? Everyone’s got free access to the stuff.
The basics to snapping up wind power are this. After gaining the attention of wind, the huge blades do their thing and rotate. These rotations pass through generators which then fire up the electricity. And that’s it, the energy is yours. Get more by clicking here:www.bbc.co.uk/climate/adaptation/wind_power.shtml
Ok, so we’ve given respect where it’s due to those producing alternative forms of energy. But what about doing something with our waste?
The genius collective of C-Tech Innovation, Birmingham Uni. and Cardiff Uni. have stuck all their heads together to use waste to roll out greener, sustainable forms of energy. One man’s junk is definitely another man’s treasure.
Precious metals like car exhausts and road dust are on their long list of things to recycle and the energy produced is then earmarked for electricity and transport fuels.
Take a look at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) website to read their latest press releases on fighting climate change:http://ww2.defra.gov.uk/environment/climate/ and renewable energy:http://archive.defra.gov.uk/rural/living/fuelpoverty/renewable.htm
You could look into developing renewable fuels for transport as:
- A chemical engineer researching alternative renewable fuels such as biodiesel from vegetable oil
- A mechanical engineer studying the feasability of the new fuel in different groups of vehicles
- An analytical chemist examining atmospheric chemicals released as exhaust fumes
- An environmental scientist investigating the impact on the environment of these chemicals relative to current fuels
- An economist calculating whether the cost of producing biofuel is economically worthwhile
- A politician with an environmental understanding lobbying government to change future transport policy
You could be involved in the future of wind power as:
- A structural engineer designing the construction of the turbine
- A physicist calculating how to convert the energy most efficiently
- A materials technician or materials engineer ensuring the most appropriate materials are used for the structure to avoid deterioration or decomposition in the environment
- A meteorologist advising on positioning the turbine by predicting wind direction and weather forecasting
- An electrical engineer at the national grid modelling energy output and reliability
- A media researcher with a scientific understanding monitoring research and finding the information needed for radio or TV programmes
- A writer or journalist reporting the latest developments in the media.