Learn about nonrenewable and renewable energy sources currently available in North Carolina, and then find out how scientists in the state are testing strategies for harvesting renewable energy from the Atlantic Ocean.
Alignment to NC Essential Standards
- EEn.2.8.1 — Evaluate alternative energy technologies for use in North Carolina.
Time Allotment Needed: 5 days (block schedule)
At the end of this lesson students will be able to:
- Compare alternative energy sources to traditional energy sources.
- Evaluate alternative energy options available from NC coastal resources.
- What sources of energy are nonrenewable?
- What sources of energy are renewable?
- On which sources of energy does North Carolina most depend?
- What kinds of energy does North Carolina produce?
- How can our coastal resources provide energy?
- How do coastal wind and wave energy options compare to traditional energy sources for use in North Carolina?
- Hydrokinetic energy
- Environmental impact
Students will play the EPA Generate Game. This game serves as a dynamic platform for teaching students about the considerations involved in deciding what type of energy generation to build, as well as the costs (financial and otherwise) involved in providing electricity.
Students will prepare for and participate in a debate concerning placement of wind and/or wave turbines in waters offshore from the NC coast. Using information gathered throughout the lesson and additional research, half of the class will prepare to debate the “For” side and half will prepare to debate the “Against” side. Students must choose one of the following roles:
- Graphic designer: These students will select and prepare graphics to be used as visual aids during the debate.
- Researcher: These students will conduct additional research into the topic. Students can perform independent research or be provided links such as the ones listed below under Additional Resources.
- Writer: These students will prepare the main points to be presented during the debate.
Wind Energy Development — WindEIS.anl.gov
Renewable Energy — RenewableEnergyWorld.com
North Carolina Wind Energy — Appalachian State University
Turning Point — National Wildlife Foundation
Ocean Energy Making Waves — Ourworld.unu.edu