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Book Chapter

The Fossil Fuel Cycle

Published:
January 01, 2004

Abstract

Fossil fuels supply about 86% of the global primary energy consumption for transportation, industrial, commercial, and residential uses. While a minor part of fossil fuels is used as a raw material for the chemical industry, the vast majority is combusted providing heat, mechanical, and electric energy for the urban-industrial society. Owing to the combustion of fossil fuels, copious quantities of pollutants are emitted into the air and impact on the local, regional, and global air quality. It is technologically possible to significantly reduce the emissions of most pollutants, albeit at considerable energy and economic penalty. However, the reduction of emissions of carbon dioxide, one of the principal products of fossil fuel combustion, poses technological, economic, societal, and political problems of enormous magnitude. In recent decades it has become evident that rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide (and other greenhouse gases) will cause global warming and other climate changes.

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Geological Society, London, Special Publications

Energy, Waste and the Environment: a Geochemical Perspective

R. Gieré
R. Gieré
Universität Freiburg, Germany
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P. Stille
P. Stille
ULP-École et Observatoire des Sciences de la Terre-CNRS, Strasbourg, France
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Geological Society of London
Volume
236
ISBN electronic:
9781862394841
Publication date:
January 01, 2004

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