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Low-energy means spending little energy for providing heating, cooling and sanitary hot water in one apartment. Low-energy refers to the amount of primary energy needed in a dwelling for heating, cooling, sanitary hot water, ventilation and lights. Primary energy represents raw energy before transformation, such as the energy contained in fossil fuels. Because of the losses during production and transport of electricity, a factor has to be applied to convert electric energy to primary energy. There are different norms defining the threshold of primary energy consumption for claiming the low-energy label (Minergie in Switzerland, Effinergie in France, Passivhaus in Germany or CasaClima in Italy). To achieve such a low-energy spending, Beodom works on improving energy efficiency and on using renewable energy to replace the use of energy derived from fossil fuels. 1.1 Students learn to identify the role of enzymes in metabolism, describe their chemical composition and use a simple model to describe their specificity on substrates.
Most people would know that some animals (like frogs, snakes and lizards) are a€?cold-bloodeda€? and that when the weather is cold, these animals are less active than when ita€™s warm.
Each enzyme has a unique shape - it is this shape that means it will make just one reaction go. Enzymes are not usually used up in chemical reactions - they can be used over and over, so they can be present in tiny amounts. Enzymes are difficult to study in high school but there is one in saliva that we can study. Explain why our bodies need to make large amounts of digestive enzymes (like pepsin) but only tiny amounts of other enzymes (like hexokinase, which is present in every cell and catalyses the breakdown of glucose to glucose 6-phosphate). This experiment is important to addressing the skills outcome H11 (a€?A student justifies the appropriateness of a particular investigation plana€?).
I hope you have a picture of many chemical reactions occurring in your own body right now, each one occurring because of the presence of tiny amounts of enzymes. So, it is important that the temperature and acidity in your body has to be kept at the right level. Maybe you can think of some changes that occur in your body when the temperature gets too low! The first step to prevent your death is for your body to recognise the change in your body temperature. I have only considered what happens when there is a danger of you over-heating but there are many aspects of your body that have to be kept constant - for example, oxygen, sugar and water levels in the blood. Nerve impulses travel very quickly, and travel from one small part of the body to another small part. Hormones travel relatively slowly in blood, from an endocrine gland to a number of target organs. An example might be the hormone adrenalin, travelling from the adrenal glands above the kidneys to skin (constricting blood vessels), the pacemaker in the brain (increasing heart rate), the liver (increasing the level of glucose in the blood) and many other organs. At the Mid-Atlantic ridge, a€?black smokersa€? raise the temperature of the ocean above 100oC without the water boiling (because of the very high pressure). There are other organisms that thrive in temperatures close to the freezing point of water. The temperatures at which organisms are found and the range over which they can survive is because of the enzymes in their bodies.
A Grylloblattid - (Grylloblatta bifratrilecta) an insect related to crickets and cockroaches that lives in snow. Leta€™s make our ectotherm the impressive but relatively harmless (if left alone) Red-bellied Black Snake (Pseudechis porphyriacus). Comparing our ectoderm (Black Snake) and endoderm (Wombat) it is clear that both have behaviours and bodies that help them to survive extremes.
Your textbook does not give any examples of plants responding to temperature change - only adaptations to temperature extremes -so Eucalypts have drooping leaves which helps them to avoid overheating when the Sun is high; deciduous trees drop their leaves which helps them to avoid frost damage. Responses of plants to temperature change are not common but there has been great interest from horticulturalists over several hundreds of years in the ability of Rhododendron spp to curl their leaves in response to temperature change. Most people would know that some animals (like frogs, snakes and lizards) are a€?cold-bloodeda€? and that when the weather is cold, these animals are less active than when ita€™s warm.A  Why is this?
Enzymes are not usually used up in chemical reactions - they can be used over and over, so they can be present in tiny amounts.A  But most importantly, they only work under special conditions - a narrow temperature range and a narrow pH (acidity) range.
That usually doesna€™t happen because things happen in your body to cool your body.A  You sweat, surface veins open up so that blood flows closer to the cooling air, and you breathe more often releasing warm our from your lungs.
This is a practical investigation involving second-hand research.A  Before you start it, you should read these notes. I have only considered what happens when there is a danger of you over-heating but there are many aspects of your body that have to be kept constant - for example, oxygen, sugar and water levels in the blood.A  For each, there are receptors that detect the changes and a control centre (usually in the brain) that counteracts the change. Nerve impulses travel very quickly, and travel from one small part of the body to another small part.A  An example might be from a fingertip to a very small part of the brain when we touch something. There are other organisms that thrive in temperatures close to the freezing point of water.A  For example, there are bacteria-like cells that grow on snow turning it red (to produce a€?watermelon snowa€?). On the other hand, individual organisms can generally survive in a fairly narrow range.A  For example, tropical fish die in cold water, yet antarctic fish would die in tropical waters. Choose an ectothermic animal species, an endothermic animal species and a plant species.A  Dona€™t forget the advice about second-hand research, especially to acknowledge your sources.
Your textbook does not give any examples of plants responding to temperature change - only adaptations to temperature extremes -so Eucalypts have drooping leaves which helps them to avoid overheating when the Sun is high;A  deciduous trees drop their leaves which helps them to avoid frost damage.


Of course, we have many other problems associated with a finite world, including rising population, water limits, and climate change. Slide 4 suggests that the world economy is heading into recession, because recent growth in the use of energy supplies is very low recently. Slide 5 shows a chart I put together, using data from several different sources, showing how growth in energy consumption has compared with growth in GDP. Between the years 1900 and 1998, the use of electricity rose (black line) as the cost of electricity fell (purple, red, and green lines).
If electricity prices had risen instead of fallen, it seems doubtful that this pattern of rising consumption could have taken place.
Debt is important because it makes goods affordable that would not otherwise be affordable.
Even when energy products are cheap, debt seems to be needed to get oil or coal out of the ground, or to make a new device such as a wind turbine. The value to society of a barrel of oil is determined by how many miles it can make a diesel truck go, or how far it can make an airplane fly.
In the 2000-14 period, the cost of new oil production was increasing very rapidly–by more than 10% per year, by some estimates. The fact that we need energy for economic growth means that we somehow must obtain this energy, even if doing so costs more. The higher cost of oil affects many things that we don’t think are related, including the cost of building new homes, the cost of building cars, and the cost of building roads.
The problem we encounter is that neither cheap energy nor the continued run-up of debt is sustainable.
I gave this talk on December 15; the first increase in interest rates took place on December 16. Most of us have heard the Peak Oil story, and assume it represents a reasonable view of where we are headed. Peak oilers certainly did get part of the story right–at some point, the cost of oil extraction would rise. The problem with low commodity prices is that there are many loans that have been taken out to support their production.
In order to get oil prices up higher, the wages of factory workers, restaurant workers, and other non-elite workers need to rise, so that they can afford to buy nice cars and nice homes. If space solar (or for that matter, any renewable energy) is to be helpful, it needs to be very cheap, so that products made using renewable energy are affordable. If the replacement energy source is cheap enough, perhaps there will not be a huge run-up in debt to GDP ratios, to finance the new devices used to provide electricity or other energy. We are encountering problems now, so we need a replacement now, not 20 or 50 years from now.
We cannot expect the cost of electricity production to be more than the current wholesale selling price of electricity.
Another consideration is that we need to be able to operate our current vehicles using a liquid fuel, made with electricity, because of the time and materials involved in switching over to electric vehicles. This past week, I gave a presentation to a group interested in a particular type of renewable energy–solar energy that is deployed in space, so it would provide electricity 24 hours per day. In the 2000-14 period, the cost of new oil production was increasing very rapidly–by more than 10% per year, by some estimates.
The higher cost of oil affects many things that we don’t think are related, including the cost of building new homes, the cost of building cars, and the cost of building roads. Peak oilers certainly did get part of the story right–at some point, the cost of oil extraction would rise.
Resilience is a program of Post Carbon Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping the world transition away from fossil fuels and build sustainable, resilient communities.
It means building energy efficient apartments, and using free renewable energy to further reduce the energy cost. That amount of primary energy must be below a given threshold for the dwelling to claim the low-energy label. To produce electricity, primary energy has to be used, such as burning coal, burning natural gas, using nuclear energy, using hydro-power or using photovoltaic solar panels.
However, because it can maintain its body temperature within a narrow range, wombats can remain active over a much wider temperature range. The only theoretical solution would be to create a huge supply of renewable energy that would work in today’s devices. For this reason, even a huge supply of very cheap renewable energy would not be a permanent solution. It would be impossible to feed, house, and clothe 7.3 billion people without supplemental energy of some kind. Another sign that we are headed into recession is that fact that CO2 emissions fell in 2015.
There was a big jump in economic growth immediately after World War II, in the 1950-65 period.
For example, having a loan for a house or a car makes a huge difference regarding whether such an item is affordable.
Part of the problem is the cost of the capital equipment needed to extract the oil or coal, or the cost of the wind turbines themselves. As consumers are forced to buy increasingly expensive homes and cars, and as governments find that the building of roads is increasingly expensive, more debt is used.


Cheap energy tends to change to expensive energy, because we use the cheapest sources first.
If we are to have non-debt growth in the future (because we are reaching limits on debt), it needs to again come from cheap energy alone.
King Hubbert talked about a very special situation–a situation where another cheap, abundant fuel took over, before fossil fuels began to decline.
That is why debt is such a problem, and it is why prices of many commodities, including oil, are far too low compared to the cost of production. What they missed was the fact that prices would at some point fall behind the cost of production because of affordability issues. Just as a rubber band can stretch for a while, the price of oil can rise for a while, fueled by more and more debt. This requirement likely reduces the maximum cost of electricity even below four cents per kWh. The only theoretical solution would be to create a huge supply of renewable energy that would work in today’s devices. King Hubbert talked about a very special situation–a situation where another cheap, abundant fuel took over, before fossil fuels began to decline.
In 2006, she became interested in the likely financial impacts of oil limits on insurance companies and other financial institutions, and started writing about that issue. In Serbia, where electricity is mainly produced using poor quality coal, the factor should be close to 3. That is using few centimeters of thermal insulation, regular windows, taking no care about thermal bridges and using only electricity or fossil fuels to heat and cool the dwellings.
Another part of the problem is paying for factories to make devices that use the energy product. Once prices rose above $20 per barrel, the amount of debt needed to produce a given amount of GDP growth rose dramatically. The result was a falling difference between the value to society and the cost of production. The continued debt run-up becomes more and more difficult to handle, unless interest rates fall lower and lower. We need to get back to something similar to the low-cost energy that fueled the economy before the debt run-up.
The story we frequently hear is about low oil prices, but there is also a problem with low natural gas prices.
Also, low commodity prices affect asset prices–for example, prices of coalmines, or prices of agricultural land. Low prices would then bring the economy down, as it did in the Depression in the 1930s, and in quite a few earlier collapses. We can tell we are hitting this limit when high prices reverse to low prices, as they have done since 2011. Also, low commodity prices affect asset prices–for example, prices of coalmines, or prices of agricultural land.
Electricity would need to be produced for no more than four cents per kWh, and liquid fuels would need to be produced for less than $20 per barrel of oil equivalent.A The low cost would need to be the result of very sparing use of resources, rather than the result of government subsidies.
Emissions fell when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, and they fell during the economic crisis in 2008. A third problem is making it possible for users to afford the end products, such as houses and cars.
At some point, interest rates can’t fall enough, and the whole pile of debt tends to collapse, like a Ponzi scheme. As the prices of commodities fall, the price of the land used to produce those commodities falls. At some point, interest rates can’t fall enough, and the whole pile of debt tends to collapse, like a Ponzi scheme.
Many commodities besides oil are affected; these include natural gas, coal, iron ore, many metals, and many types of food.
Perhaps the world economy is hitting headwinds that are not being picked up well in conventional calculations of GDP growth. With higher wages, workers could afford more products that used electricity, such as electric lights for their homes and radios. If cheap energy is not really available, then adding more debt can somewhat make up for the high cost of energy production. It is much easier to borrow the money for a new tractor, and pay the loan off as the tractor is put to use, than it is to save money in advance, using only the funds earned when farming with simple hand-held tools.
When oil prices are low, oil-exporting nations find it hard to collect enough taxes to support their many programs.
Prices of iron ore, steel, copper, and many other metals are very low, as are prices of many kinds of staple foods traded internationally.
Our concern should be that low prices will bring down production, quite possibly for many commodities simultaneously.



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