sc300 unit 4 project La Shon Sturdivant

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Running head: ALTERNATIVE ENERGY SOURCES

Alternative Energy Sources
La Shon Sturdivant
Kaplan University

SC300-05: Big Ideas in Science: From Methods to Mutations
Laurie Leet
October 24, 2014

Energy is defined as the ability to do work, such as propel the body forward by taking a step (motion). Energy and its ability to do work are measured in joules: power (watts) x time (seconds) and work joules = force (newtons) x distance (Trefil et al, 2010). Energy exists in many forms; kinetic (motion or movement), potential (stored), thermal/heat (atoms and molecules), wave and mass (Trefil et al, 2010) to name a few. Energy is interchangeable, thus it can be changed from one form to another. Where might all of this energy come from? All living systems and/or organisms are sustained through a process call photosynthesis which harnesses energy from the Sun for the purpose of providing dietary sustenance to the inhabitants of the Earth. Conversely, the Sun supplies the radiation necessary to heat and light the Earth, which is beneficial to all living systems and/or organisms. Hence, the Sun is the origin of energy. The focus of my essay will be to explore the current ways in which we use the Sun’s energy to supply heat and light on Earth, the advantages and disadvantages of our current energy methods and/or sources, and ways in which we can utilize renewable energy sources and reduce and conserve our current energy consumption. The best place to start my quest would be in my own home located in Baltimore City Maryland. Our energy supplier is Baltimore Gas & Electric Company. Our home is over 50 years old, but has had some modern upgrades, such as a new heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC). This system is fueled by both renewable (electric) and nonrenewable (natural gas) energy. Without some energy saving protocols in place, it can be rather costly to operate this system. For example, the price charged per natural gas Therm is



References: Trefil, J.; Hazen, R.M. (2010). The Sciences: An Integrated Approach, Sixth Edition, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Energy Quest. (2014). The Energy Story. Retrieved from http://www.energyquest.ca.gov/story/chapter08.html UCSUSA Environment America. (2009). The High Costs of Fossil Fuels. Retrieved from http://www.environmentamerica.org/reports/ame/high-cost-fossil-fuels Energy4me GoodReads. (2014). Plato Quotes. Retrieved from http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/68707-necessity-is-the-mother-of-invention Google Maryland Energy Administration. (2013). RPS: Increasing Maryland’s In-State Renewable Generation to 20% by 2022. Retrieved from http://www.statestat.maryland.gov/gdu/10renewableenergydeliveryplan.pdf University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). (2014). Learning About Renewable Energy: Biomass Energy Basics. Retrieved from http://www.nrel.gov/learning/re_biomass.html

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