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This subject provides understanding of the principles of development and sustainability in the context of renewable and non-renewable energy sources. Social, environmental and financial implications of technologies to de-carbonise emissions and technologies that can offer a future non-carbon energy supply are discussed.
This subject uses project based learning where students work in teams to investigate the appropriateness of a selected energy source or a selected technology for a particular country, region or a location. Students learn to apply the principles of sustainability and development.
Knowledge gained in this subject will allow graduates to practice in the area of energy policy and planning. The subject complements other subjects offered in the energy theme of the Department such as Solar Energy, Energy Efficiency Technology and Sustainable Infrastructure Engineering.
- Introduction: What does 'sustainable' mean? What is development? A model for sustainable development
- Consumption (needs versus wants), Global perspectives (inequality and resource distribution)
- Role of energy in development
- Requirements for an sustainable energy supply
- Carbon versus non-carbon energy supply - overview (resources, usage)
- Problems with past patterns of energy use
- Energy efficiency (potential and limits)
- Energy Policy
- Transport futures and peak oil (resources)
- Carbon capture and storage
- Nuclear fission and fusion
- Renewable energy technologies - large and small
- Discussion Forum: Reality of Sustainability.
Intended learning outcomes
INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES (ILO)
On completion of this subject the student is expected to:
- Critique energy systems and sources for their sustainability
- Describe the various technologies that have the potential to provide a sustainable energy supply system
- Analyse the conflicting outcomes arising from the need for increased energy use in most developing countries and the global and local needs for sustainability and minimal environmental impact
- Describe and analyse the factors which lead to making an informed choice between energy resources and technologies.
Students successfully completing this subject should develop the following general skills:
- Ability to undertake problem identification, formulation and solution
- Understanding of social, cultural, global, and environmental responsibilities and the need to employ principles of sustainable development
- Ability to utilise a systems approach to design and operational performance
- Capacity for independent critical thought, rational inquiry and self-directed learning
- Ability to communicate effectively, with the engineering team and with the community at large.
Last updated: 10 November 2023