The Real Cost Of Fossil Fuels
Fossil fuels are fuels which have been created at the start of the earth's formation, or millions of years ago, and which we harvest now to power our homes and cities.
There are 4 types of fossil fuels: Gas Oil, Orimulsion and coal. These are all used for energy sources in our homes and cities and they are still popular today. Here is what each of them are:
- Gas - gas is mostly methane and it is one of the most popularly used fuels for homes. Natural gas is cleaner than other gas however resources are depleting fast.
- Oil - oil, or petroleum, is the most popular and the most expensive energy source in the world. It is used by many around the world and is used to fuel cards and jets.
- Orimulsion - This is an oil which is retrieved from the Orinoco oil belt in Venezuela. There is a large reserve of this oil and this is why it has become a popular choice recently.
- Coal - Coal is the formation of fossilized plant matter such as tree bark and branches, and it is highly comprised of carbon.
Now that we know what the fossil fuels are it is time to see why we should stop using them as soon as we can.
The main issue with burning fossil fuel to create energy is the thick smog and gas which is emitted into the air. Pollution is a dangerous thing for the environment and in big cities, this is why many who suffer with respiratory issues such as asthma struggle to breathe for long periods of time. Air pollution can be dangerous because of sulfurous gases entering the atmosphere, which can react with water to form sulphuric acid and cause acid rain. It is important for us to try and keep the air clean to protect ourselves.
By far the biggest real issue our planet is facing right now is global warming. It is a vicious cycle caused by CO2 emissions and all starts with fossil fuels. When fuel is burnt, carbon dioxide is released into the air and travels to the top of our atmosphere. Our planet has a protective shield around it called the Ozone layer which protects us from too much sunlight. However, when carbon dioxide and methane hit the Ozone layer, they pierce holes in it, before reflecting back down into our streets and seas. This greenhouse effect leaves us exposed to the sun and therefore more heat, which causes heat to rise. Heat melts the ice caps and destroys arctic eco-systems, it can cause droughts which affect our livestock and crops, and it can cause a world of issues. Using clean fuel such as wind and solar power can negate the need for gas emission and help save our planet.
Rising Sea Levels
As the ice melts in cooler parts of our world, the sea level rises with the additional water. The issue with this is that low-level islands or land can be overtaken by water and covered completely. In 100 years cities such as London could be half or completely underwater if we don’t change our ways.