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EARTHSYS 103: Understanding Energy (CEE 107A, CEE 207A)

Energy is a fundamental driver of human development and opportunity. At the same time, our energy system has significant consequences for our society, political system, economy, and environment. For example, energy production and use is the number one source of greenhouse gas emissions. In taking this course, students will not only understand the fundamentals of each energy resource -- including significance and potential, conversion processes and technologies, drivers and barriers, policy and regulation, and social, economic, and environmental impacts -- students will also be able to put this in the context of the broader energy system and think critically about how and why society has chosen particular energy resources. Both depletable and renewable energy resources are covered, including oil, natural gas, coal, nuclear, biomass and biofuel, hydroelectric, wind, solar thermal and photovoltaics (PV), geothermal, and ocean energy, with cross-cutting topics including electricity, storag more »
Energy is a fundamental driver of human development and opportunity. At the same time, our energy system has significant consequences for our society, political system, economy, and environment. For example, energy production and use is the number one source of greenhouse gas emissions. In taking this course, students will not only understand the fundamentals of each energy resource -- including significance and potential, conversion processes and technologies, drivers and barriers, policy and regulation, and social, economic, and environmental impacts -- students will also be able to put this in the context of the broader energy system and think critically about how and why society has chosen particular energy resources. Both depletable and renewable energy resources are covered, including oil, natural gas, coal, nuclear, biomass and biofuel, hydroelectric, wind, solar thermal and photovoltaics (PV), geothermal, and ocean energy, with cross-cutting topics including electricity, storage, climate change, sustainability, green buildings, energy efficiency, transportation, and the developing world. The course is 4 units, which includes lecture and in-class discussion, readings and videos, assignments, and two off-site field trips. Enroll for 5 units to also attend the Workshop, an interactive discussion section on cross-cutting topics that meets once per week for 80 minutes (timing TBD based on student schedules). The 3-unit option requires instructor approval - please contact Diana Ginnebaugh. Website: http://web.stanford.edu/class/cee207a/ Course was formerly called Energy Resources.nPrerequisites: Algebra. May not be taken for credit by students who have completed CEE 107S.
Terms: Aut, Spr | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-EngrAppSci, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
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