This complex infographic contains three distinct sets of information.
The data displayed on the left explain the amount of electricity that could be generated from renewable sources, as well as how electricity is actually generated.
The coloration of the world map displays the amount of available solar energy. The numbers tell the actual amount of solar power generated by selected countries.
The map of the American Southwest displays regions in the area that could host solar-energy facilities.
Use the zoom tool to study these graphics and answer the questions in the following tab.
According to "Ranking the Renewables," the graphic on the left, what renewable energy source has the greatest potential to generate electricity?
What is the world's most popular renewable source of electricity?
Most of this infographic is colored in shades of yellow and orange. Why do you think the artist chose to color a circle in "Ranking the Renewables" purple?
According to the world map in this infographic, Africa is hit with the greatest amount of solar radiation, and may have the greatest potential for solar power. What other continents display similar potential?
The information provided with "The Solar Southwest," the map on the right, says "Some environmentalists oppose the land- and water-hungry" solar-energy projects.
Locate the American Southwest on this layer of the MapMaker Interactive. Now, compare the land-cover data with potential sites for solar-energy projects displayed in "The Solar Southwest." Why do you think environmentalists would criticize these "water-hungry" projects?
Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry electricity Noun
set of physical phenomena associated with the presence and flow of electric charge.
fossil fuel Noun
coal, oil, or natural gas. Fossil fuels formed from the remains of ancient plants and animals.
visual representation of data. Also called information graphic or graphic.
able to convert solar radiation to electrical energy.
renewable energy Noun
energy obtained from sources that are virtually inexhaustible and replenish naturally over small time scales relative to the human life span.
solar energy Noun
radiation from the sun.
Encyclopedic Entry: solar energy solar power Noun
rate of producing, transferring, or using solar energy.