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The energy trap

Today the world depends heavily on fossil fuels to provide its energy needs.

Whenever these fuels are burned, climate-changing gases are released into the atmosphere - 20,000 tonnes (nearly half the weight of the Titanic) have been released across the world since you began reading this!

These gases let in energy from the Sun but stop heat from the Earth escaping into space. The trapped heat stays near the Earth's surface and causes it to warm.

As the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere has increased they have started to have a big impact on the climate and weather patterns. In turn this can affect food and water supplies.

Governments around the world are trying to agree on how to cut back on these gases and sort out the problem, but individuals and organisations, like the Science Museum, also need to do their bit.

At the Science Museum we’re improving the way we use energy and finding new ways to use energy sources like biofuels and solar, instead of fossil fuels which produce climate changing carbon dioxide.

Although we’ve only just started, we’ve already cut the amount of carbon dioxide we produce by 17%.

What is "Climate change"?
What is "Fossil fuel"?
What is "Greenhouse gas"?
Fascinating fact
Fascinating fact