Interactive Labs

Energy Lab

Lessons > Energy Efficiency > Step 2

Repeat Step 1, but run the simulator to 2110. This time keep the amount of fossil fuels used to a minimum: change the use of renewable energy sources first before raising the amount of fossil fuel used. Also, begin to think about the atmospheric CO2 level and how to keep it under 550 ppm by 2110.

Predict what will happen with your ideal % efficiency and carbon recapture as determined in the last step. Record your prediction in the table and then run the simulator three times to 2110, the first with your ideal parameters and the next two with both parameters higher and then both lower. Record your results and then answer the following:

  1. What combination of parameters did you find for a "best case" scenario this time? Were they close to your prediction? Why might your prediction have been off? What kinds of problems/issues/factors come into play this time that weren't present previously?
  2. Based on this simulation, what would need to be changed in American people's lives in order to meet the parameters you've designed in this model?
  3. Considering what you now know about carbon emission issues (see the Carbon Lab) and energy/fuel sources, what might humans have to do in order to meet energy demands, maintain low CO2 emission levels, and not cause further harm to the environment? What initial steps might we all take?