Science in society:

Bioenergy and biofuels discussion toolkits

Fossil fuels such as oil and natural gas are non-renewable, and they will become harder to obtain at today's prices. Also, burning these fuels releases large amounts of greenhouse gases, which contributes to climate change. The need to find alternative energy supplies has never been greater. Bioenergy could contribute to an energy solution relying on renewables while offering the promise that it will take account of environmental, social and economic issues. These discussion resources will enable young people to examine the issues that bioenergy raises.

There is potential for huge scientific and technological advancement in bioenergy as an area of research, but the current use of biofuels and new biofuel crops remain controversial.

Democs for schools

Democs is a conversation card game where you can learn about bioenergy and discuss your opinions about it. No expert knowledge is required for the game and it encourages group discussion and allows anyone to explore the issues around bioenergy. Democs for a schools: Bioenergy is a guide to using the card game with secondary students. The card game was originally developed as part of the BBSRC Bioenergy dialogue and has since been modified for use in the classroom and at science Fairs.

The Democs cards can be downloaded from www.bbsrc.ac.uk/society/dialogue/activities/bioenergy-dialogue/dialogue-materials.aspx.

Democs for schools: Bioenergy (PDF 906KB)

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Democs game summary (PDF 524KB)

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Democs bioenergy (PPTX 1.25MB)

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Jatropha curcas: A solution or false hope?

Jatropha curcas: A solution or false hope? is a discussion resource involving role-play and voting based on the successful SciberBrain format.

The resource focuses on a specific crop grown in warm climates, Jatropha curcas, and the challenges faced in the developing world. The oil from Jatropha curcas seeds can be converted into biodiesel, but is it the solution to our energy problem?

Jatropha curcas: A solution or false hope? (PDF 1.21MB)

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Powering the Future: Biofuels (PPTX 4.12MB)

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Jatropha curcas: A solution or false hope? Jatropha curcas: A solution or false hope?