What's the future of fossil fuels? Take the quiz!


New technologies are emerging that are hoping to bridge the wide gap between fossil fuel consumption and responsible use. Test your knowledge of fossil energy technologies that are changing our relationship with our natural resources.

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Question 1 of 20

Which of the following is one method of clean coal technology?

Carbon Capture and Storage
Emission nets
Cap and Clean

... Carbon Capture and Storage, or CCS, is a mainstay of clean coal technology.


Question 2 of 20

In 2009, how much money did the U.S. Department of Energy invest in clean coal energy?

$10 million
$1 billion
$500 million

... In 2009 alone, the U.S. Department of Energy invested $1 billion in clean coal technology.


Question 3 of 20

What U.S. Department of Energy program is looking into the feasibility of co-producing electricity and hydrogen?

The Future of Hydrogen
Division of Hydrogen Research

... FutureGen, a relatively new division of the U.S. Department of Energy, is researching the co-production of electricity and hydrogen.


Question 4 of 20

What fossil fuel is found in "ice cages?"

Methane hydrates
Liquid petroleum
Natural gas

... Methane hydrates are encased in ice-like cages found in gigantic deposits deep beneath the ocean's floor.


Question 5 of 20

Why were methane hydrates once considered a nuisance?

They clogged natural gas pipelines.
They interfered with deep sea oil drilling.
They released a terrible odor when processed.

... Methane hydrates are known to clog natural gas pipelines. When scientists discovered they are a possible source of alternative energy and revenue, attitudes shifted a bit.


Question 6 of 20

What is one concern regarding drilling for methane hydrates?

That it will interfere with sonar.
That it could cause a landslide on the continental shelf.
That it could cause a change in ocean levels.

... Scientists are worried that the deep-sea drilling could destabilize the continental shelf, and cause a massive underwater landslide.


Question 7 of 20

What do geologists use to locate stores of natural gas?

Seismic surveys
Infrared cameras
Microscopic drills

... Seismic surveys are used to capture data about possible stores of natural gas.


Question 8 of 20

How many cars worldwide are fueled by natural gas?

11 million
6 million
20 million

... There are 11 million cars powered by natural gas worldwide. Experts believe the number will steadily increase as these cars become more affordable.


Question 9 of 20

What type of CCS technology captures C02 after fossil fuels are burned?

Postcombustion carbon capture
Oxu-fuel carbon capture
Feel-the-burn carbon capture

... Postcombustion carbon captures C02 after burning, which reduces the number of toxins released into the atmosphere.


Question 10 of 20

What percentage of energy consumed in the United States comes from oil and natural gas?

40 percent
60 percent
25 percent

... A whopping 60 percent of energy consumed in the United States comes from natural gas and oil.


Question 11 of 20

What do fuel cell cars run on?

Solar power

... Hydrogen gives fuel cell cars their juice. More specifically, hydrogen is converted into electricity, which charges the motor.


Question 12 of 20

What type of technology is used in fuel cell cars?

Fuel packs
Hydrogen packs
Fuel cell stacks

... Fuel cell stacks convert hydrogen and oxygen to electricity, which in turn powers the fuel cell car's engine. That's why fuel cell cars purr along so nicely; electric motors make no noise.


Question 13 of 20

What is one drawback of fuel cells cars?

Most cars don't run on hydrogen.
There aren't many fueling stations.
The engines are very loud.

... Hydrogen fueling stations are few and far between. In fact, the majority of hydrogen fueling stations are scattered throughout California.


Question 14 of 20

What does NETYL stand for?

National Energy Technology Laboratory
National Environmental Technology Locator
New Explorations in Technology Lab

... NETYL is the acronym for the National Energy Technology Laboratory, which is a division of the Department of Energy. NETYL is focused on finding ways to create better technologies for harvesting fossil fuels in a cleaner and more sustainable manner.


Question 15 of 20

What clean energy producer can be extracted from clean coal?

Carbon dioxide

... While the debate rages on over the truth behind clean coal, perhaps its problems will one day be offset by the fact that we can extract hydrogen, which emits no carbon emissions, from the rock.


Question 16 of 20

Where is the C02 extracted during CCS stored?

It is encased in steel-lined cement containers and placed underground.
It is injected under the Earth's surface.
It is stored in above ground in nuclear waste facilities.

... After the C02 has been extracted from the coal, it is transported to specific geologic and oceanic storage facilities where it is injected under the Earth's surface.


Question 17 of 20

What is the transportation process of CCS?

Containers of C02 are transported to storage facilities by train.
C02 is piped to storage facilities.
C02 isn't transported anywhere.

... C02 is transported to storage facilities via miles and miles of underground pipes. Proponents of CCS point out that in many cases, existing pipes can be used, avoiding the cost of building new pipe lines.


Question 18 of 20

What is the goal of central hydrogen production?

To co-produce hydrogen and steam power.
To co-produce coal and hydrogen.
To co-produce electricity and hydrogen.

... Central hydrogen production will enable the co-production of electricity and hydrogen from coal. There are two methods of co-production: Central Hydrogen Production and Alternate Hydrogen Production.


Question 19 of 20

Most of the hydrogen produced in the U.S. comes from which three states?

California, Louisiana and Texas
California, Nevada and New Mexico
Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama

... California, Louisiana and Texas are the largest producers of hydrogen in the United States. What little hydrogen that is imported comes from Canada.


Question 20 of 20

What injects vibrations under the surface of the Earth?

Seismic truck vibrators
Seismic drills

... Seismic truck vibrators are parked on large pads over a specific spot. They send vibrations under the surface of the Earth and collect data about stores of natural gas.


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