First of all congratulations to all of you on clearing JEE. Congratulations again on being the part of the golden batch of IIT Kanpur! You are so lucky! We are sure that it must have taken every possible effort on your part and it is dream come true. You are going to join one of the most prestigious institutes of the country and probably the best engineering college of the country. You are going to become the leaders in science and technology and we write this article to introduce to two of the most heavily researched and relevant topics that concern the world today i.e. Environment and Energy.

Energy is probably the most important requirement of humans after food,water and shelter, we use it constantly at home, at work and for leisure. Energy maintains our standard of living and economy. Nowadays we take it for granted that energy is available whenever we want it.But once we only had candles… they were used to light our homes before the industrial revolution. Wood or coal fires provided heat for cooking food and for keeping us warm. Walking was then the only form of transport for most people.

Since then, a vast array of energy devices and systems has been developed.These transform energy from sources provided by nature (coal, oil, gas,wind, sun and nuclear fuels) into other forms that we can use. As the population grows so do our energy demands.

Startling facts confront us
By the year 2050, world-wide energy demand is projected by the World Energy Council to be at least double its present level.

Fig 1.
The most reliable predictions indicate that by 2050, the world’s population will have nearly doubled from its present level. It will rise from around 6 billion to about 10 billion people. Most of this growth, and much of the increase in energy consumption, will occur in developing countries.

Energy supply must be sustainable and diverse. And energy needs to be used more efficiently.

A sustainable energy supply, both in the short- and the long-term, is needed for promoting both economic development and people’s quality of life, as well as protecting the environment.

We also need a greater diversification of energy resources – if we are largely dependent on one fuel source, we risk price rises and supply disruptions.

Energy is a precious resource which must be conserved. Improved energy efficiency, therefore, in our homes, factories and transport needs to be strongly encouraged.

Damage to the environment is reason enough to promote alternative environmentally friendly energy sources.

Much of the global-scale environmental degradation we see today is due to the adverse effects of energy production and use. The burning of fossil fuels produces carbon dioxide, one of the greenhouse gases. There is a growing concern about global warming, that these gases can cause. At present, fossil fuels produce most of our energy. Some energy comes from nuclear power stations and a small amount from renewable sources.Nuclear power and renewables do not produce greenhouse gases.

This highlights the need for working dedicatedly in the field of environment and energy. We the members of the Group for ronment

and Energy Engineering here at IIT Kanpur do just that. Our vision is to create solutions for the current energy and environment problems of the world such that smaller global entities can be energetically self-dependent.We work on practical problems and do hands on work with the institute association. Our projects include IIT Kanpur energy audit (Samadhan), solar experiments (GE3 has set up the solar experimental facility) and

Fig 2. Solar Experimentation

Fig 3 Anand delivering a presentation at the Biomass energy Conference.

achieving cooling through solar heat and through CNG gas expansion (a patented project). The group members have attended one international and three national level conferences and have spoken at all of them. We are also involved in the various initiatives taken by IIT Kanpur in the field of energy and environment under the Golden Jubilee program e.g. campus solar lighting and the paper recycling project .

Apart from Technical aspects of research and conferences GE3 also organises courses and special lectures by experienced professionals. We have conducted a course on energy efficiency in December and by the time you will be reading this, special lectures on Rainwater harvesting would have been conducted.

The videos of these events are archived and maintained in the GE3 resource section and can be accessed by anybody. Café Green is one of the recent initiatives of GE3, under this talks on relevant issues will be organised on a fortnightly basis (and snacks might be served during the lectures!).

There are other projects which are under feasibility studies and can not be described here due to lack of space, we encourage you to contact us so that we can tell you about these projects and you can participate in a major way right from your first year! For more details visit http://students.iitk.ac.in/ge3, we will love to read your views on the forums for which you will have to register on the site. We hope that you will take an interest in these exciting fields which range from a rural application cantered bio-gas plant to multi million dollar ultra modern nuclear and thermal power plants. The work is technical, managerial, social (you can not even
conceive how complex the energy and environment issues are at the social level), and that is to say there is opportunity for everybody!

Contact us even while you are at home! We can not wait to hear from all our golden friends!See you at IIT Kanpur!
Contact us at ge3.iitk@gmail.com
References
1. European Commission website

http://ec.europa.eu/research/energy/gp/gp_imp/article_1082_en.h

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2. GE3 archives.