This is a one-stop resource for understanding the complexities of energy policy and the science behind the utilization of energy sources. The multidisciplinary perspective presented in Understanding Energy and Energy Policy is necessary for readers to be able to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of potential energy policies. Activists, scientists and policy makers around the world have long argued that we need to find sustainable and secure solutions to the world's energy demands.
At issue for citizens worldwide is whether we are scientifically literate enough to understand the potential policy choices before us. Understanding Energy and Energy Policy draws on case studies from the global North and South, from countries that are resource poor and resource rich, while providing explanations of the science and politics behind burning fossil fuels, and power created through nuclear energy, solar energy, geothermal energy, wind energy, biofuels, and water.
"Climate change is the greatest challenge of our age and wide public discussion is needed to create support for the far reaching actions that will be needed to solve the problem. This detailed yet accessible book is essential reading for anyone who wants to gain an informed understanding of the energy sector in order to participate constructively in the debate."
- Ian Tellam, director of Adaptify and research associate with Stockholm Environment Institute
"This book provides an excellent overview of the technical and political challenges associated with future energy supply. It offers a global perspective with some fascinating case studies and a nuanced debate regarding the pros and cons of alternative energy systems. A fantastic source book."
- Karen Bickerstaff, University of Exeter
"Accessible, comprehensive, compelling! Braun and Glidden weave together the myriad threads of energy policy, setting them against the backdrop of mounting climate change and anchoring them in relevant national case studies. If education is the safeguard of democracy, this book offers not only a first-rate intellectual synthesis but also a vital political contribution."
- Karen Litfin, University of Washington and author of Ecovillages: Lessons for Sustainable Community
1: How we get our energy
2: How energy policy evolves
3: Fossil fuels
5: Nuclear power
6: Photovoltaic and solar thermal
9: Hydropower and tidal power
10: Challenges in resource poor states
11: Where do we go from here?
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Lisa M. Glidden is associate professor of political science at the State University of New York-College at Oswego. Timothy F. Braun is an assistant professor of biological sciences at the State University of New York-College at Oswego.