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The Energy Portal
Welcome to Wikipedia's Energy portal, your gateway to energy. This portal is aimed at giving you access to all energy related topics in all of its forms.
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A plasma lamp, using electrical energy to create plasma light, heat, movement and a faint sound
A plasma lamp, using electrical energy to create plasma light, heat, movement and a faint sound

In physics, energy (from Ancient Greek: ἐνέργεια, enérgeia, “activity”) is the quantitative property that is transferred to a body or to a physical system, recognizable in the performance of work and in the form of heat and light. Energy is a conserved quantity—the law of conservation of energy states that energy can be converted in form, but not created or destroyed. The unit of measurement for energy in the International System of Units (SI) is the joule (J).

Common forms of energy include the kinetic energy of a moving object, the potential energy stored by an object (for instance due to its position in a field), the elastic energy stored in a solid object, chemical energy associated with chemical reactions, the radiant energy carried by electromagnetic radiation, and the internal energy contained within a thermodynamic system. All living organisms constantly take in and release energy.

Due to mass–energy equivalence, any object that has mass when stationary (called rest mass) also has an equivalent amount of energy whose form is called rest energy, and any additional energy (of any form) acquired by the object above that rest energy will increase the object's total mass just as it increases its total energy.

Human civilization requires energy to function, which it gets from energy resources such as fossil fuels, nuclear fuel, or renewable energy. The Earth's climates and ecosystems have processes that are driven either by the energy the planet receives from the Sun or by geothermal energy. (Full article...)

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Petroleum (crude oil) is a naturally occurring liquid fossil fuel found in rock formations in the Earth, consisting of a complex mixture of hydrocarbons of various lengths. Due to its high energy density, easy transportability and relative abundance, petroleum has become the world's most important source of energy since the mid 1950s. Most petroleum is used for producing gasoline (petrol) and fuel oil, both important primary energy sources. Petroleum is also the raw material for many chemical products.

Most petroleum is extracted from oil wells found in oil fields. Although it is also possible to extract petroleum from oil shale or tar sands, both of which are known to exist in large quantities, doing so at low cost and without impacting the environment remains a challenge. The first modern oil well was drilled in 1848 in Azerbaijan, but it was the introduction of the internal combustion engine in the early 20th century that provided the demand that has largely sustained the industry to this day. The top three oil producing countries are Saudi Arabia, Russia, and the United States.

Burning oil releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, one of the major greenhouse gases contributing to global warming. Bioethanol and biodiesel are already used to some extent as alternatives, notably in Brazil, as are hybrid electric vehicles. Trials using hydrogen fuel are also in progress. There are further concerns about security of supply, oil price rises and whether world oil production may reach a peak, before declining, as predicted by Hubbert peak theory.

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Plasma-lamp 2.jpg

Photo credit: Luc Lviatour
Electricity ionizing the gas in a plasma lamp.

Did you know?

  • Despite declines in production in recent years, Victoria still produces almost 20% of Australia's crude oil?
  • 4.26 million tonnes of the sun are converted to energy every second by nuclear fusion?

Selected biography

Roman Arkadyevich Abramovich (born 24 October 1966 in Saratov, Russia) is a Jewish Russian oil billionaire and one of the Russian oligarchs.

Between 1992 and 1995, after Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev's 'perestroika' economic reforms permitted the opening of small private businesses, Abramovich founded five companies that eventually evolved to specialize in the trading of oil and oil products. With the approved by Boris Yeltsin, in 1995 Roman Abramovich and partner Boris Berezovsky paid $100m for a controlling interest in the major Russian Sibneft oil company, then valued at $150 million. Berezovsky subsequently sold his stake to Abramovich after fleeing to London. In September 2005 Abramovich sold his interest in Sibneft to state energy giant Gazprom for $13 billion.

Despite maintaining that his primary residence is Moscow, in 2006 Abramovich was named as the second-wealthiest person in the United Kingdom. His property investments and other assets were estimated at £10.8 billion. In June 2003, Abramovich became the owner of the companies that control Chelsea Football Club (soccer club). He also became the world's greatest spender on luxury yachts, with four boats in what the media have called the 'Abramovich Navy'.

Although he rarely visits the area, in October 2005 Abramovich was reappointed governor of the impoverished Chukotka Autonomous Okrug in the Russian Far East where he has made significant financial contributions. He was originally elected to the governorship in 1999.

In the news

3 September 2022 – 2021–present global energy crisis
An estimated 70,000 people march in the Czech Republic's capital city Prague demanding that the government do more to control soaring energy prices in the country and voicing opposition to the country's involvement in the Russo-Ukrainian War. The demonstration was organized by political groups including the Communist Party. (Reuters)
2 September 2022 – 2021–present global energy crisis
The G7 group of nations announce plans for a price cap on Russian oil. Russia vows to halt sales to countries imposing it. (Reuters)
27 August 2022 – Hungary–Russia relations, Nuclear power in Hungary
Minister of Foreign Affairs Péter Szijjártó announces Russian nuclear energy provider Rosatom will begin construction of two new nuclear reactors to expand the Paks Nuclear Power Plant. (BBC News)

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