Energy Return on Investment


Type: Mini-lesson

Theme: Statistics

Grades: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Learning Target: Students will analyze various data sets, work with charts, graphs and ratios to learn about energy sources and energy return on investment.


Activity Link:

Energy Return on [energy] Invested (EROI) for the following energy sources:

  • Solar Photo-voltaic
  • Biomass (corn) Ethanol
  • Wind Turbine
  • Concentrated Solar Power Systems
  • Combined Cycle Gas Turbine
  • Coal
  • Hydroelectric
  • Nuclear
  • Biogas

Data sets for analyze:

  • Bar graphs
  • Line graphs
  • Charts
  • Pie charts
  • Schematic diagram
  • Exponential models
  • Ratios

Primary Source:

WeiƟbach, D., Ruprecht, G., Huke, A., Czerski, K., Gottlieb, S., & Hussein, A. (2013). Energy intensities, EROIs (energy returned on invested), and energy payback times of electricity generating power plants. Energy, 52, 210-221. doi: 10.1016/

Exit Ticket
CCSS Math Practice
  • I can reason abstractly and quantitatively.
  • I can construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
NGSS Crosscutting Concepts
  • Energy and Matter