Coal _ Katowice _ Poland

The KWK Jas Mos coal mine is one of seven mines near the town of Katowice. At a depth of one kilometer Jan Pieron operates the hydraulic supports at the site where the coal is drilled out of the ground. Miners generally keep this going for 25 years and then retire. The average life expectancy of the people who do this work is 53 years.

Jan lives with his wife Anna and their three children Aneta, Julia and Lukash in a flat near the mine.

Petroleum _ Astrakhan _ Russia

The Astra drilling platform is located in southern Russia near Astrakhan.

Sergey Milibayef is the chief engineer responsible for searching and drilling for oil in the Caspian Sea. He trained in Baku and gained most of his experience in the Barentz Sea. He lives alternately by himself on the drilling platform and with his wife Leila and daughter Natalia in Astrakhan.

Tidal energy _ La Rance _ France

The tidal plant in the La Rance Estuary in Brittany has been generating electricity since 1967. It is the only tidal power plant in the world that delivers electricity on an industrial scale.

Alian Barreau heads the enterprise, which has a workforce of around forty. He lives with his wife son and daughter in a house overlooking the sea. Barreau is is an enigineer and has been a director of the plant since 1994.

Lignite _ Weisswasser _ Germany

One of the world's last remaining lignite mines lies near Poland. Huge machines dig for lignite at depths ranging between 30 and 100 metres.

Ines Frost operates one of these machines. She lives with her husband Uwe and three children in an aresa that bears indelible marks of opencast mining since the beginning of the century. Perched in a cabin high above the ground Ines steers the digging installation which is made up of various smaller inter-connected machines.

Crude oil _ Burgan field _ Kuwait

Kuwait is one of the smallest states of the Arabian Gulf. The Burgan field from which most of the oil is extracted is one of the world's richest fields. Abdullah Jasim Al-Abdul Salam trained as an engineer in the US and since the liberation of Kuwait from the Iraqi occupation in 1991, has been employed as Superintendent Project Manager for North Kuwait.

He lives with his wife, three daughters and son in Al Qurain, a small town 20 km south of the capital.


Natural gas _ Hoogezand _ The Netherlands

A comprhensive network of pipelines has been laid throughout teh Netherlands to ensure that homes and industries get an uninterrupted flow of natural gas.

Elzo Reinders lives with his wife Rouly in Hoogezand. Their two grown-up daughters have left home. After a training as an instrument maker Elzo took a job with Gasunie in 1968. He started out as a mechanic before being promoted to station mechanic and later to reginal technician.

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Geothermal enery _ Nesjavellir _ Iceland

To the north-east of Reykjavik lies Nesjavellir, one of the places in Iceland where easy acces gan be gained to the underground water reservoirs. The water has a temperature of around 300 C and gushes to the surface under a pressure of 25 bars.

Kristinn Gislasson works as a process manager at a brand new power station. For years Kristiin worked as a ship's engineer.

He lives in Reykjavik with his wife Audor. Two of their four children have already left home.

Solar energy _ CA - USA

On a barren stretch of land deep in the Californian desert stand rows and rows of mirrors reaching as far as the eye can see. As soon as they catch the first soalr rays at sunrise the coversion process into electricity begins.

Neal Davies is an operator at this power plant. Using advanced process-management technology he tries to get maximim output from this more or less free source of energy. Neal lives with his wife Debbie and two children in North Edwards.