Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas

Energy and the Environment - 2nd semester



Academic unit

Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas


Geografia e Planeamento Regional



Teacher in charge

Fernando Ribeiro Martins

Weekly hours

3 letivas + 1 tutorial

Teaching language



a) To know the contribution of various sources of energy for the development of societies;
b) To understand the energy dependence of current societies, as well as the uncertainty / instability in supply and prices resulting from the current geopolitical situation;
c) To be able to relate environmental problems with the various energy sources and technologies used in the production of energy, especially fuel;
d) To understand the diversity and complexity of the interrelationships between energy and environment;.
e) To understand the Shaping future growth scenarios of energy consumption and substitution of fossil fuels with alternative energy sources;
f) To understand the challenges of energy sustainability and compatibility between energy and the environment.



Subject matter

1) General concepts on energy
Concepts, origin, measurement, types of resources, forms of classification, conversion of energy forms, principles and laws.
2) The energy and the development of societies
The energy use over the past centuries.
3) The energy dependence of the current societies
Production and energy consumption at national, European and World.
Biomass, coal, oil, natural gas.
Nuclear power.
4) Energy / Environmental Problems
The transport sector in Portugal and the European Union.
The sector of electricity production.
Renewable energies.
5) The emergence of environmental issues
The improvement of living conditions of the population and the degradation of the planet.
The awareness of the problems and their extent on a global scale.
Policies and action programs.
Environmental protection in the European Union and Portugal.
6) Energy policy in the European Union and Portugal.
7) Global perspectives and uncertainties.


Amaral, M. (1997). Indústria e energia: as apostas do fim do século, Venda Nova, Bertrand Editora, 646 p.

Aragão, M. (1997). O princípio do poluidor – pagador. Pedra angular da política comunitária do Ambiente. Coimbra: Coimbra Editora, 255 p.

Jaccard, M. (2005). Sustainable fossil fuels. The unusual suspect in the quest for clean and enduring energy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 381p.

Rodrigues, J. (2013). O poder do petróleo. Bnomics, 206p.

Rodrigues, J. (2000). A geopolítica do petróleo. Anatomia dos conflitos, diplomacias, seguranças, soberanias. Lisboa: Atelier dos Livros, 2000, 254 pp.

Smil, V. (2005). Energy at the crossroads. London: The MIT Press, 427p

Teaching method

Expositive and participatory classes. Explanation of content using various resources, including, PowerPoint presentations, discussion of texts, web pages, etc. It is also encouraged the reflection, dialogue and the active participation of students who have the opportunity to express their views and discuss them with colleagues and the teacher.
Interpreting texts. Discussion of case studies.

Evaluation method

Written test [50%];
Written work with 15 to 20 pages supported by independent research and / or field work [35%] and presentation [10%];
Participation [5%].

(According to the FCSH Assessment Standards of the proposal evaluation elements to introduce students in the first class may suffer readjustments, particularly in the percentage weight of each element).