The Environment & Sustainability

Info For Kids

What Is Energy ?

Energy is special. There's lots of it about and it's very useful. Why? What's so special? Here's just a few reasons.

* It gets you out of bed in the morning.
* It means that birds can fly, tigers can roar, wind can blow.
* It makes the sun, the moon and stars shine.
* It makes plants grow -- food (= stored plant energy) for animals.
* It makes cars move, factories produce things, light bulbs glow, planes fly and your computer work.

I'll bet you can think of many more!

Energy Sources

There are many sources of energy: We have coal-fueled power stations, nuclear power stations (which are a lot safer than in the old days), biofuels made from plants (and sometimes used chip fat!), wind & wave power generators (pretty useful when you live in a windy & wavey place like Scotland).

And of course there's good old oil, which unfortunately won't last forever.

Possibly the best source is the Sun, which has been providing us with energy for millions of years and will keep providing energy for a few billion yet.

Saving Energy

So what can you do to save energy ?

* Set your home’s thermostat a few degrees lower.
* For each one-degree change, your family can save up to 5 percent on your home’s heating and cooling costs!
* Turn off lights and all electronics (like computers, stereos, televisions and video-games) when you leave a room.
* Use the microwave instead of the oven for cooking your meals.
* Use machines like washers, dryers, and dishwashers after 8 o'clock at night.
* Open your blinds or curtains on sunny winter days to let the sun into your home.
* Save hot water by taking short showers instead of baths.
* Turn off the water while you brush your teeth.
* Occasionally hold a ribbon up to the edges of your home’s windows. If air is leaking, the ribbon will move. If you find a leak, let someone in your family know so they can fix it.

Links To Online Quizzes

Pitara Kids Network

Nickelodeon Big Green Quiz

Childrens BBC

National Geographic Magazine