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  1. 1. Technology will Destroy our Planet Our Reliance on Fossil Fuels Nathan Ruff
  2. 2. Technology will Destroy our Planet -  How does society rely on Fossil Fuels?  Types of Fossil Fuels  Extracting Methods  Environmental Impacts  Can We Change Our Needs?
  3. 3. Society Needs Fossil Fuels  Our need to use fossil fuels as a society will continue to grow at an increasing rate.  We use fossil fuels to power our cars, to power our homes and is the major source of energy used world wide.  Through the use of fossil fuels we will double the amount of green house gas emissions by 2040.  Coal burning and Natural gas burning plants are expected to rise in both Canada, The United States and China.
  4. 4. Society Needs Continued  Green Fuels are becoming more and more prevalent but infrastructure for these green energies is lagging behind.  Public opinions are heavily favoring greener energies, but these technologies are costly and not easily affordable, making polluting fuels more desirable.  Governments are also are up against hard fighting lobbyist group are making greener technologies hard to develop and implement.  The Documentary “Who Killed the Electric Car” shows influences from General Motors, the Western States Petroleum Association, and other interest groups that ultimately had the technology destroyed.
  5. 5. Fossil Fuels  Fossil Fuels are created by organic deposits such as decaying plants, or animals, that have been exposed to extreme heat and pressure under the earths crust for millions of years.  Crude Oil, Coal, and Natural Gas are the main fossil fuels.  These Fuels are extracted around the globe through various means and then burned to produce energy used to power almost anything.
  6. 6. Extracting Methods – Oil  Oil is extracted through drilling.  Can be done both on land and off- shore  Drills penetrate the ground in order to pump crude oil from cavities in the earths crust containing oil.  Drilling can be very dangerous. In 2010, BP’s Deep Water Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico exploded resulting in 11 deaths and over 4.9 million barrels of oil was discharged into the ocean.
  7. 7. Extraction – Oil continued  The Alberta Oil sands do not drill for oil. It is extracted out of bitumen sands that are dug out of the oil fields.  The production of oil in this manner produces 12% more green house gases per barrel then conventional oil drilling practices.
  8. 8. Extraction – Fracking  Fracking is done by sending a mixture of water and several other chemicals into a drilled hole in the earths crust.  This mixture is sent down at an extremely high pressure to cause the rocks below to fracture and release natural gas.  The result is the mixture of chemicals is released into the surrounding ground contaminating drinking water and the surrounding earth
  9. 9. Extraction – Fracking Continued  There is a increase of up to 17% of methane contents in drinking water around fracking wells.  Less then 50% of the fracking mixture is recoverable leaving. That remaining liquid is non- biodegradable.  There is an incredible amount of fresh water used in the process of fracking which after it is used, can not be filtered and is poisonous.
  10. 10. Extraction – Coal  Coal is mined in above ground mines such as open pits, or under ground in long wall mining.  Coal was originally used in steam engines and now is used in power plants to produce electricity.  Coal is considered to be one of the worst polluters among fossil fuels.
  11. 11. Environmental Impacts  Since the discovery of fossil fuels society has become incredibly reliant on them.  Through the burning of these fuels considerable damages are being done to the environment in terms of air pollution, and the production of green house gases.  The processes involved in extracting fossil fuels are all incredibly harmful to the environment.  Through oil drilling we are running the risk of deadly spills and the polluting of oceans on off shore drilling enterprises.
  12. 12. Environment Impact Continued  The extraction of oil from bitumen sands in Alberta Canada are wasting millions of gallons of water. The Canadian Tar Sands are referred to as one of the worst polluting industrial projects in the world.  Fracking is using millions of gallons of fresh water. This water is being poisoned with chemicals and then being forced into the earth at incredibly high pressures to release natural gas.  The amount of that water that is recovered from this is very minimal. The water used in the process, regardless if it is recovered or not is no longer useable and is not biodegradable. It is either left in the ground to pollute and contaminate the earth, or left in pools to evaporate and return in the form or acid rains.
  13. 13. Can We Change?  The way that society currently relies on fossil fuels will not change in the near future without drastic improvements to greener technologies.  The amount of gas powered cars, trucks, vans and other vehicles on our roads is approaching unsustainability.  The infrastructure that is in place worldwide is one that accepts current technologies and does not have room for the development of others.  Through social constructivism the argument could be made that society is slowly moving towards a greener iniative. That greener technologies with become more desired and that will push newer eco friendly sources of power and energy into our homes.
  14. 14. Can We Changed Continued  The question remains as to whether the initial discovery of fossil fuels and the ability to harness the energy they create was something that was brought on by technological determinism, to which we, regardless of our views and social standards, are left to live with the world that energy from fossil fuels has created.  Or we have the power through Social Contructivism to change the path which our current technologies have us on through the burning of fossil fuels.
  15. 15. Conclusion  The current path that society is on is unsustainable.  Fossil fuels are a none renewable resource that we can not reproduce without the patience of millions and millions of years.  Technology in its current state, without any green developments will be a major cause for the destruction of the environment and ultimately the planet.  Society will have to start lobbying manufacturers and the government to ensure that greener energies are being developed without restrictions.
  16. 16. Sources Andrew Freedman, Climate Central, “Fossil Fuels to Dominate World Energy Use Through 2040”, 16284 Union Of Concern Scientists, “Coal vs. Wind”, Linda Dong, The Dangerous of Fracking” Wikipedia, Oil Sands, Craig C. Freudenrich, Energy Capital Group, “How Oil Drilling Works”, Science Daily, Science Reference, “Fossil Fuel”, Staff of Green Business, The Guardian, April 23, 2012, “Nine out of Ten People Want Renewable Energy”, energy “Who Killed the Electric Car?” (2006),