What the climate crisis means for land rights

The climate crisis will reshape our relationships to land around the world. Journalist David Wallace-Wells warns that, once the planet warms 2°C above preindustrial levels—the target set by the Paris Agreement—"major ...

In the active center of carbon dioxide conversion

In order to overcome the climate crisis, two measures are required: The reduction of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, and removal of CO2 from the earth atmosphere. The latter is the goal of Tobias Erb's research group at the ...

Video game designer establishes lab for renewable energy

A Dutch video game designer and entrepreneur has established a laboratory on the Big Island that is focused on developing alternatives to fossil fuels for energy, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported.

More energy needed to cope with climate change

A new study published today in Nature Communications by researchers from IIASA, Boston University and the Ca' Foscari University of Venice found that by mid-century, climate change will increase the demand for energy globally, ...

New look at old data leads to cleaner engines

New insights about how to understand and ultimately control the chemistry of ignition behavior and pollutant formation have been discovered in research led by Sandia National Laboratories. The discovery eventually will lead ...

Oceans: They pollute, they pay

In an effort to combat ocean plastic pollution, the EU has just adopted ambitious new legislation targeting ten of the most common single-use plastic products washing up on beaches and imposing greater responsibility on plastic ...

Markets missing fossil fuel exposure to climate risk: analysis

Investors are overlooking the long-term risks climate change poses to oil and gas infrastructure firms, which face tens of billion of dollars worth of stranded assets as the world transitions to greener energy, according ...

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World energy resources and consumption

In 2005, total worldwide energy consumption was 500 Exajoules (= 5 x 1020 J) with 80-90% derived from the combustion of fossil fuels. This is equivalent to an average energy consumption rate of 16 TW (= 1.585 x 1013 W). Not all of the world's economies track their energy consumption with the same rigor, and the exact energy content of a barrel of oil or a ton of coal will vary with quality.

Most of the world's energy resources are from the sun's rays hitting earth - some of that energy has been preserved as fossil energy, some is directly or indirectly usable e.g. via wind, hydro or wave power. The term solar constant is the amount of incoming solar electromagnetic radiation per unit area, measured on the outer surface of Earth's atmosphere, in a plane perpendicular to the rays. The solar constant includes all types of solar radiation, not just visible light. It is measured by satellite to be roughly 1366 watts per square meter, though it fluctuates by about 6.9% during a year - from 1412 W/m2 in early January to 1321 W/m2 in early July, due to the Earth's varying distance from the sun, and by a few parts per thousand from day to day. For the whole Earth, with a cross section of 127,400,000 km², the total energy rate is 1.740×1017 W, plus or minus 3.5%. This 174 PW is the total rate of solar energy received by the planet; about half, 89 PW, reaches the Earth's surface.

The estimates of remaining worldwide energy resources vary, with the remaining fossil fuels totaling an estimated 0.4 YJ (1 YJ = 1024J) and the available nuclear fuel such as uranium exceeding 2.5 YJ. Fossil fuels range from 0.6-3 YJ if estimates of reserves of methane clathrates are accurate and become technically extractable. Mostly thanks to the Sun, the world also has a renewable usable energy flux that exceeds 120 PW (8,000 times 2004 total usage), or 3.8 YJ/yr, dwarfing all non-renewable resources.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA