Mathematics Awareness Month - April 2013
Mathematics of Sustainability

Learn more about the interconnected nature of these resources

Learn more about Alternative Energy Learn more about Agriculture Learn more about Normal Distribution Learn more about Trees Learn more about Climate Learn more about Oil Learn more about Logistic Equations Learn more about Glaciers Learn more about Cities Learn more about the Gini Coefficient Learn more about Fishing


Oil RigsOver the past century fossil fuels have been the core of our energy system and were an important part of raising our standard of living. Mathematical modeling has helped companies identify likely spots for new fossil fuel reserves whether they be on land or under the seas. Modeling has also been applied to forecast future capacities; for example, in 1956 M. King Hubbert modeled oil production with a normal distribution and correctly predicted that U.S. oil production would peak in the early 1970s.

Fossil fuels power our cities and underlie the success of our economic system. Unfortunately fossil fuels are a finite resource that when consumed have the side effect of releasing greenhouse gases, especially carbon dioxide, into the atmosphere and thereby contribute to global warming, which is already changing our planet. Is it possible for wind and solar to replace fossil fuels as our main source of energy and can this change happen fast enough to mitigate the severity of climate change?

‹ Return to poster

Mathematics Awareness Month is sponsored each year by the Joint Policy Board for Mathematics to recognize the importance of mathematics through written materials and an accompanying poster that highlight mathematical developments and applications in a particular area.
Questions or comments about this site may be directed to mamsupport