Flexi Says: It takes energy to remove valence electrons from an atom because the force of attraction between the negative electrons and the positive nucleus must be overcome. The amount of energy needed depends on the element. Less energy is needed to remove just one or a few valence electrons than many. This explains why sodium and other alkali metals form positive ions so easily. Less energy is also needed to remove electrons from larger atoms in the same group. For example, in group 1, it takes less energy to remove an electron from francium (Fr) at the bottom of the group than from lithium (Li) at the top of the group. In bigger atoms, valence electrons are farther from the nucleus. As a result, the force of attraction between the valence electrons and the nucleus is weaker. Since the outer shell of group 18 elements are completely filled, therefore the energy required to remove an electron from them will be extremely large.