In this lesson, our instructor Bryan Cardella gives an introduction on fossil fuels. He explains the fossil fuel usage worldwide, crude oil and natural gas origins, petroleum production and use, natural gas, coal bed methane, black shale natural gas, methane hydrates, oil's effects on the environment, refining and delivering oil, and finishes with a thorough explanation of coal.
Fossil fuels are from the buried remnants of previously existing life forms within sedimentary rock. They get converted via chemical reactions into crude oil, natural gas, coal, oil shale, or tar sands
Fossil fuels provide 90% of the fuel used worldwide, and globally oil and natural gas make up 70-80% of primary energy usage
Crude oil (petroleum) is mainly derived from young material buried in depositional basins, usually near young, active plate boundaries. Source rock, reservoir rock, trap, and cap rock participate in making oil reserves
Primary production and enhanced recovery are used to withdraw from wells. Eventually, a proven oil reserve can result. There are different estimates as to how long current proven oil reserves will last and how much more is left out there to extract at a profit
Current worldwide use of oil is at 85 million barrels per day, and for every 3 we use we find 1 more
Natural gas has been utilized more recently compared to crude oil, and it is considered cleaner than petroleum with less pollution when it’s burned
Coal-bed methane arises from the methane that results when coal is formed under ground. Utah and Wyoming are thought to have the largest coal-bed methane reserves in the U.S.
Black shale natural gas is also in great supply under the Appalachian mountains, but recovery is costly and controversial (i.e. hydrofracturing, or fracking)
Methane hydrates exist beneath the ocean floor and they are like an ice-like methane supply in a frozen water container, and the potential for energy supply from this resource is projected to be huge!
When extracting oil from underground, there are some negatives: use of land for wells/pipes/storage, pollution of surface waters, accidental release of massive amounts of oil, accidental release of air pollutants, release of drilling muds, land subsidence, and loss/disruption of ecosystems
Fractional distillation has some controversy because of accidental spills/leaks, and the environmental costs of creating fine oil
Drilling in the ANWR (Arctic National Wildlife Refuge) has its pros and cons
Coal arises from partially decomposed vegetation that has been buried in sediment. The annual worldwide consumption is approximately 7 billion metric tons
Depending on the energy supplied from the coal, it is classified as anthracite, bituminous, sub-bituminous, or lignite. Low-sulfur content in the coal is preferred (due to environmental hazards from burning high-sulfur coal)
Methods of coal mining can be controversial: strip mining, mountaintop removal, and underground coal mining all have their risks and huge potential for environmental damage and degradation of ecosystems (acid mind drainage, land subsidence, coal fires, etc)
The future of coal is not entirely clear, but there have been efforts to contain it via governmental regulations and allowance trading
Oil shale and tar sands play a minor role today in the extraction of fossil fuels, but they may play a bigger role in the future if extraction can be done more efficiently
Lecture Slides are screen-captured images of important points in the lecture. Students can download and print out these lecture slide images to do practice problems as well as take notes while watching the lecture.
This book includes a comprehensive review of the key AP Environmental Science concepts and targeted strategies for acing every section of the exam. Additionally, the book includes two full length practice tests with full answer explanations.
This book is an updated manual that offers a brand-new diagnostic test to pinpoint the test taker's strengths and weak areas, two full-length practice exams with all questions answered and explained, a detailed review of all test topics, supplemented with practice questions and quizzes with answers, an overview of the test plus helpful test-taking strategies, and hundreds of diagrams and illustrations .