Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain

Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

We need to get mum a special birthday present this year, she wants something that is exciting but environmentally friendly. What about a new scooter?

What about some windsurfing lessons?

Which present would do least damage to the environment?
© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 1 Stimulus

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Decline in greenhouse gas emissions.

Carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere when we burn oil, coal and gas to get useful energy. Research shows that it is better for the environment when people spend less money on manufactured goods and more money on activities and services.

0% – 2% – 4% – 6% – 8%

Impact on UK greenhouse gas emissions of changing consumption from goods to activities and services.

5%

10%

15%

Size of transfer in consumption from goods to activities and services.

How much carbon dioxide is produced by goods or activities and services depends on: – – – – energy needed to make a product energy needed to transport the product energy needed to use a product or do an activity energy needed to dispose of a product.
Page 2 Information sheet 1

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Working as a team:

Look at the 6 pictures below.

– Discuss and agree which of these things are ‘goods’ and which are ‘activities or services’. Put a tick in the box on the items you think are ‘goods’. – Put the pictures in rank order. Put number 1 in the circle next to the picture you think would lead to the most carbon dioxide being produced and number 6 next to the picture you think will lead to the least carbon dioxide being produced.

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 3 Task sheet 1 – Sorting goods, activities and services

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Here is some information to show the carbon dioxide produced. Compare this list to the rank order you gave for the different goods or activities or services.

1
A new car – produces about 30,000 kg of carbon dioxide over 5 years.

2

3

4
A ticket for loop-theloop bi-plane experience – produces about 44 kg of carbon dioxide for a 30 minute flight.

5

6

A flat A pair of plasma knee length screen “fashion television – boots” – can produce making these about 2,000 produces kg of carbon about 80 kg dioxide over of carbon 5 years. dioxide.

A voucher Annual for 6 membership “Strictly for card for You” ‘Grow Your dancing Own’ lessons – Allotment these produce Society – plot about 21 kg size 200m2 – of carbon possibly 0 kg dioxide per of carbon person for dioxide 6 lessons. produced overall. Growing plants can be carbon neutral.

The figures for carbon dioxide produced are given as estimates. How much you use a product or how long you spend doing an activity can change the figures. Can you think of any other reasons why the amount of carbon dioxide produced could vary? The list shows that manufactured goods produce more carbon dioxide than the activities and services. Would this always be true? Can you think of any exceptions?
© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 4 Information sheet 2

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

When goods are manufactured, transported and used energy is needed for lots of different things and carbon dioxide can be produced.

Working as a team, choose one of the goods from the last page (the car, television or fashion boots). Build up and draw a mind map to show all the different ways energy is used in making and using it. Add your ideas to the mind map “skeleton” shown below.
Transporting the ... Making the ...

Energy needed to make and use a ...

Show in a different colour on your mind map any other ways that making or using this product could damage the environment.

Using the ... Recycling the ...

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 5 Task sheet 2

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Some ways energy is used in making and using the new car
Making the car
 Melting metal  Cutting, shaping and pressing metal  Melting and shaping plastics  Spraying paint  Heating and lighting the factory  Moving the production line  Working electric drills, hammers etc.  Transporting workers to the factory.

Here’s information to show some of the different ways energy can be needed to make and use a new car. If the energy used comes from burning oil, coal or gas, carbon dioxide is released into the atmosphere. Can you think of any more ways energy might be used? Does the information give you any extra ideas to add to your mind map?

Transporting the car to its user
 Fuel to drive the ship  Fuel to power a road transporter  Fuel to drive the car.

Using the car

 Petrol or diesel fuel to run the car  Making new tyres

 Making spare parts for the car  Heating and lighting the garage where the car is serviced.

Recycling the car

 Transporting the old car to the recycling site  Heating and lighting buildings at the recycling site  Operating the car crusher at the recycling site  Melting metal so it can be reused  Shredding and heating plastic so it can be recycled.

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 6 Information sheet 3

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

I like the look of these activities. I’d get loads out of doing them!
...meeting new friends

...fun

...satisfaction

...helping the environment ...keeping my carbon footprint low

Work as a team. In your team decide roles for each person, e.g. chair person, recorder, creative designer, critical friend. Make a list of activities that you think would make great presents and also be environmentally friendly. Use the Thinking Frame to help you decide on your “top” activity. When you have decided on the top activity write down 5 plus points which could be used to advertise this as a present. At least 2 of your points must explain how the activity could be good for the environment.
© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 7 Task sheet 3 – Promoting activities

Thinking frame
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Stronger ideas

Put these in the outer box. After discussion, move stronger ideas into the green box and then your top 3 ideas into the centre box. Then decide on your top idea.

Thinking Frame

Stronger ideas

Write all your ideas for activities on small pieces of paper or post-its.

Id
Id eas

Ide

as s Ideas Id ea Isd ea dea s I s a e Top 3 ideas Id for activities
eas Id

Thinking Frame

Idea

s

Ide

Stronger ideas

Thinking Frame

eas Id

as

Ide

as

ea
eas Id

Stronger ideas

s

Ide

as

eas Id

Thinking Frame

I

e d

s a

a Ide

s

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 8 Thinking frame

Smart Grid
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Thumbs Up

We identified some different ways in which manufacturing goods and doing activities can produce carbon dioxide, eg ...

Next time we will...

W

e were great at the task because ...

We know that choosing activities, rather than goods, can reduce carbon dioxide produced. This is because ...

Thumbs Sideways

We suggested some ways of promoting an activity as a present, eg ...

W

e were good at the task because ...
We worked well as a team because ...

Thumbs Down

W

e were okay at the task because ...

We organised our teamwork to be effective ...

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 9 Smart grid

Dilemmas
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

My husband wants a gas patio heater for a present but I don’t want to buy one because I think they produce unnecessary carbon dioxide.

I love to get fashion shoes for Christmas and my birthday but I have read that making leather produces a lot of carbon dioxide.

My granddad gives us lots of vegetables which he grows to save on food miles but I’m fed up with eating sprouts and carrots!

Here are some situations for you to think about and discuss. Why is each one a dilemma?
 Talk about each dilemma with a partner and then with the rest of your team.  Come up with as many ideas as you can to make the dilemma smaller or perhaps solve the problem completely.

We like to treat ourselves to weekend breaks in European cities but we are getting concerned about the number of flights we take.” Rosa

I want to learn the flamenco guitar but the nearest teacher is 50 miles away. If I have a lesson every week I would drive an extra 5,000 miles each year. That could produce a lot of carbon dioxide!”

My son and daughter live in Australia. They’ve said they want to pay for me to fly out and visit them for 2 weeks. I want the trip to be as eco-friendly as possible.

Archie and Chyla
© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Will

Lena

Rhian

Graham
Page 10

Addicted to Energy – Sustain to Gain
Comino Environment Project: Sustainable living

Take home and use it sheet
Choosing the environmentally friendly option. When making a choice between two different things you need to think about the energy used to make and use each thing. Use your own judgement to complete the table when choosing between two different things.
thing 1:

tick column next to the thing with the least energy used

thing 2:

Making the thing Transporting the thing Using the thing Recycling the thing
Which of the 2 things did you choose and why?

Making the thing Transporting the thing Using the thing Recycling the thing

© 2008 Centre for Science Education and the Comino Foundation

Page 11 Make a difference