As the Earth's oil supply runs out, and the effects of climate change threaten nations and their populations, the search for carbon-neutral sources of energy becomes more important and increasingly urgent.
This book focuses on solutions to the energy problem, and not just the problem itself. It describes the major energy-generation technologies currently under development, and provides an authoritative summary of the current status of each one. It stresses the need for a balanced portfolio of alternative energy technologies. Certain solutions will be more appropriate than others in particular locations, due to the differences in availability of natural resources such as solar, wind, wave, tidal and geothermal. In addition, nuclear options (both fission and fusion), as well as technologies such as fuel cells, photovoltaics, artificial photosynthesis and hydrogen (as an energy carrier), all have a potential role to play.
A state-of-the-art critique of energy efficiency in building design is also included. Each chapter is written by an acknowledged international expert and provides a non-technical overview of the competing and complementary approaches to energy generation.
1. Energy. beyond Oil: a global perspective; 2. Arresting Carbon Dioxide Emissions: why and how?; 3. Geothermal Energy; 4. Wave and Tidal Power; 5. Wind Energy; 6. Nuclear Fission; 7. Fusion Energy; 8. Photovoltaic and Photoelectrochemical Conversion of Solar Energy; 9. Biological Solar Energy; 10. Sustainable Hydrogen Energy; 11. Fuel Cells; 12. Energy Efficiency in the Design of Buildings; 13. Governing the Transition to a New Energy Economy; 14. Summary