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26 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back

fossil fuels

a fuel formed from the decay of ancient forms of life; coal, oil, and natural gas; cheaper than alternative energy sources

geothermal energy

heat from below Earth's surface

solar energy

energy from the sun

alternative energy source

a source of energy other than the burning of

fossil fuels


electricity generated by running water

renewable resources

materials from the environment that people use that can be replaced relatively quickly

nonrenewable resources

materials from the environment that people use that cannot be replaced

nuclear energy

energy contained in the nucleus of an atom

inexhaustible resources

an energy source that cannot be used up

thermal pollution

the addition of warm water into a stream or lake that is normally cold


a harmful change to the environment; renewable resources produce less of this than fossil fuels


created from the remains of ancient plants that lived in swamps

acid rain

formed when fossil fuels are burned and combined with water vapor, then falls to Earth as rain; type of pollution


a mixture of smoke and fog, formed when fumes of cars collect in moist, calm air; type of pollution

greenhouse gases

released from burning fossil fuels and causing global temperatures to increase

oil spills

come from tankers or pipelines and can harm living things


saving, protecting, or using natural resources wisely


use less heat in winter, more fuel efficient cars


resource that comes from living, or recently

living creatures


water bottles and other plastics, paper, reduces amount of garbage


washable cloth napkins, tv and computer parts, water bottles

Examples of nonrenewable energy resources

coal, oil, natural gas, minerals

Examples of alternative energy sources

wind, solar energy, geothermal energy

problems associated with oil spills in the ocean

contaminants sink to deep waters and affect ocean ecosystems, feeding becomes difficult for sea birds and the affected birds cannot fly

How can trees be renewable or nonrenewable?

they are renewable, unless they are cut down more quickly than they are replaced

ways people misuse resources and cause harm to the environment

burning fossil fuels

building dams can disrupt aquatic ecosystems

cutting down too many trees