United Kingdom Energy Consumption Trends

Essay by Matthew_stevenUniversity, Bachelor's November 2008

download word file, 7 pages 3.0

As humanity has progressed energy has become increasingly important to everyday life. Energy is needed to provide services such as transportation, powering factories to provide goods and even to supply households with light and heat and as we further progresses there is a growing fear that there are not enough resources to sustain our need to consume energy. This essay looks at the trends of energy consumption in the United Kingdom over the past 30 years and considers what measures, if any, are need to be taken to ensure the sustainability of this energy consumption in the future.

The United Nations' Brundtland Commision defined the term 'sustainability' as:'Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs.'This suggests that the United Kingdom must have sufficient recoverable portions of resources known as 'reserves', (I.E. Oil in the ground is not a reserve unless it is economically recoverable), which can be converted into energy to accommodate the power requirements at this point in time as well as to accommodate requirements of the future.

Resources can be broken up into two groups, primary sources and secondary sources. The National Energy Foundation defines a primary resource as:'A substance that occurs in nature and can be used to produce energy, such as coal, oil, U-235, ect'.

And a secondary source as:'An energy resource that is produced from a primary energy source using technology (e.g. electricity produced from solar energy by photovoltaic cells)'.

To discuss whether the U.K. can successfully sustain its energy needs I will first have to interpret the energy consumption trends within the four main energy consumption sectors; The Transport, Domestic, Industrial and Service sectors.

Transport is a major aspect in today's world and there is a growing desire to utilize the...