Renewable Energy : Glossary

There are 82 documents in this section.

  • Petrochemicals

    22 August 2000

    Chemicals derived from oil and natural gas - for example, ethylene, propylene, toluene - which act as feedstocks for the manufacture of products such as plastics, pesticides, fertilisers, antiseptics and pharmaceuticals. Petrochemicals play a very important role in modern society, but they also create pollution problems. Plastics are a major component of solid waste, for example, fertilisers contribute to eutrophication of lakes and rivers and pesticide residues in food and water present health problems.

  • CFC's (Chlorofluorocarbons)

    21 August 2000

    A group of chemicals containing chlorine (Cl), fluorine (F) and carbon (C), sometimes referred to by their trade name Freon. These synthetic compounds were used extensively for refrigeration and aerosol sprays until it was realized that they destroy ozone (they are also very powerful greenhouse gases) and have a very long lifetime once in the atmosphere (more than 100 years). The Montreal Protocol agreement of 1987 has resulted in the scaling down of CFC production and use in industrialised countries.