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Renewable Energy: Energy from the Earth CPD

Discover how both traditional and renewable energy supplies are extracted from the Earth.

Energy from the Earth programme

New dates: TBC

Venue: Newcastle University

About the programme

Since the industrial revolution, our energy supply has largely consisted of fossil fuel energy from the Earth (coal, oil, gas).

This module will address the exploitation of both these traditional fuels, and also unconventional sources of fossil fuels. We will also discuss the evolving technologies for the clean use of fossil fuels.

We will introduce the extraction of renewable energy directly from the Earth through the utilisation of nuclear energy, deep geothermal energy, and through ground source heat pump technology.


We will cover topics including:

  • Key geological concepts
    • Geological time
    • The origin of the Earth, Earth structure and plate tectonics
    • Sedimentary organic matter
    • Sedimentation and sedimentary basins within the contact of coal and oil source rock formation
    • Generation and migration
    • Trapping petroleum – the reservoir
  • Sources, extraction and global consumption of coal, oil and natural gas
  • The concepts of reserves, resources and peak energy
  • New frontiers for conventional coal, oil and gas, as well as challenges and risks (economic; environmental) on these new frontiers
  • Unconventional fossil fuels:
    • Coal bed methane
    • Underground coal gasification
    • Oil shale
    • Oil sand
    • Shale gas
    • Gas hydrate
  • Carbon capture and storage
  • Fossil fuel burning and climate change
  • The greenhouse effect and greenhouse gases
  • Energy to CO2 ratios for different fuels
  • Future consumption scenarios – controls, options and consequences
  • Example IPCC emissions scenarios
  • Politics of fossil fuels
  • Nuclear energy (fission and fusion)
  • Geothermal energy, including geothermal electricity production

For further information

If you have any queries about our CPD programme please email llahub@ncl.ac.uk