Fossil Fuels and Alternate Energy Sources
In the early 1900s, fossil fuels were the primary source of energy, but in more recent times with reserves diminishing and global warming becoming a major issue, we are forced to develop alternate sources of energy. According to Melosi, Governments became aware of the effects of fossil fuels as early as the 1950s, and in an attempt to combat this, they passed laws to try and lower the amount of pollution it caused (The Automobile and the Environment in
American History). To the general public, this was a great first step. Environmentalists, on the other hand, felt that the government should develop alternate sources of energy, ones that were more eco-friendly and renewable. While it was good to think about the environment and the effects of the prolonged use of fossil fuels, the thought of using alternate energy sources to replace fossil fuels was irrational at that time. There was simply not enough knowledge or technology to accomplish this. We are feeling the effects of fossil fuels now more than ever, and more emphasis is being put on developing alternate energy sources on a large scale. Luckily, in this day and age, we have the means to do so.
In “Energy from Fossil Fuels” Hubert sates that throughout history, the population of man largely depended on the amount of energy that could be used (1). When man was first created, the only available energy was that which came from food. As time progressed, it became
clear that we needed more sources of energy in order to improve our way of life. Our answer to this problem was fossil fuels. Coal was the first form of fossil fuel ever discovered, and although it was found in the 13th Century, it was not until the early 1900s that its true potential came to light (1). These black “sea coles” were found along the shore of the east coast of Britain. The breakthrough came when a persons there noticed that coal would burn. This led to
Cited: 1. Hubbert, M. K. "Energy from Fossil Fuels." Science 109.2823 (1949): 103-09. Eoearth.org. Web. 2. McLamb, E. "Fossil Fuels vs. Renewable Energy Resources." Ecology Global Network. N.p., 6 Sept. 2011. Web. 06 Oct. 2013. 3. "Big Era Seven." World History For Us All: Big Era 7. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Oct. 2013 4. Melosi, M. V. "Automobile and the Environment in American History: Auto Emissions and Air Pollution." Automobile and the Environment in American History: Auto Emissions and Air Pollution. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Oct. 2013. 5. "National Audit Office." National Audit Office Government Funding for Developing Renewable Energy Technologies Comments. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Oct. 2013.