Tuesday – What is Energy?

Energy is the ability to do work. Turns out, coal, gasoline and natural gas are all just forms of fuel. They are carriers of energy. Sunlight is a source of energy, a flow form. Humans are the only organisms that have figured out how to use stock resources of energy (otherwise known as “fuel”). Up until this point humans along with every other organism on the planet have relied on nothing but flow forms of energy to accomplish all the work they needed.¬†Nonrenewable resources have never been relied on like they are right now.

Global warming is an idea that has been around for over thirty years. Yet so many people haven’t accepted, noticed, or know what’s happening. One article in Rolling Stone Magazine last August addressed three very critical numbers on the subject of global warming.

The first is 2 degrees Celsius. This is the agreed upon amount our earth can heat up before nature is disrupted beyond the tipping point. At the time of the article, earth had already heated up .8 degrees Celsius.

The second number is 565 gigatons. This is the estimated amount of additional carbon dioxide that can be released into the atmosphere by midcentury to avoid raising the temperature of the earth more then 2 degrees Celsius.

The third number is 2,795 gigatons. This is the amount of carbon dioxide that will be released when all the coal, oil, and gas reserves of fossil fuel companies gets burned. That’s more then five times the projected amount that earth could handle.

I really don’t know what to think about this. I’m not one for doom and gloom scenarios, so this is a lot for me to handle. I’d like to think things aren’t as bad as some people think. Hopefully the world is adapting to a new era, a time of responsible and efficient energy usage.

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