Worksheet: Energy from Fossil Fuels

In this worksheet, we will practice describing the advantages and disadvantages of generating electricity by burning fossil fuels.


Which of the following are fossil fuels?

  1. Coal
  2. Uranium
  3. Oil
  4. Natural gas
  5. Plutonium
  • Ad, c, e
  • Ba, b, c
  • Ca, b, e
  • Da, c, d
  • Ec, d, e


The Monroe Power Plant in Michigan has an installed capacity of 3 2 8 0 MW. If it was to produce this power output constantly for an entire year, how much energy would it produce in that year? Give your answer in standard form in joules to 3 significant figures. Use a value of 365 for the number of days in a year.

  • A 2 . 8 3 × 1 0 1 3 J
  • B 1 . 2 0 × 1 0 1 2 J
  • C 6 3 . 1 × 1 0 1 7 J
  • D 1 . 0 3 × 1 0 1 7 J
  • E 2 . 0 1 × 1 0 1 4 J


In a gas-fired power station, natural gas is combusted with . The energy released from this reaction is used to heat water in a boiler to produce . This steam is used to drive , which are connected to . The electrical output of these generators is transferred to the national grid.

  • Acoal, steam, turbines, motors
  • Boxygen, steam, motors, generators
  • Chydrogen, steam, turbines, motors
  • Doxygen, steam, turbines, generators
  • Ecarbon dioxide, steam, turbines, generators


Which of the following statements correctly describe the disadvantages of generating electricity from fossil fuels?

  1. All fossil fuels release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere when combusted in power stations. This carbon dioxide has a significant effect on the global environment and is causing climate change.
  2. Fossil fuels release very little energy per kilogram of fuel.
  3. Fossil fuels will eventually run out.
  4. Burning coal and oil releases sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere, which is toxic and causes acid rain.
  • Ad, b, c
  • Ba, b, c
  • Cd, b, a
  • Da, c, d


Which of the following statements correctly describe the advantages of generating electricity from fossil fuels?

  1. Fossil fuels release no carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, thus not contributing to climate change.
  2. Fossil fuels release no damaging pollutants, such as sulfur dioxide, into the atmosphere.
  3. Fossil fuels release large quantities of energy when combusted and are relatively cheap.
  4. Fossil fuels are a reliable energy source. Electricity production from fossil fuels is not affected by the time of day, the weather, or the season.
  • Ab and d
  • Ba and b
  • Cc and a
  • Dc and d
  • Ea and d

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