Cover: Energy Revolution: The Physics and the Promise of Efficient Technology, from Harvard University PressCover: Energy Revolution in HARDCOVER

Energy Revolution

The Physics and the Promise of Efficient Technology

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Product Details


$29.95 • £23.95 • €27.00

ISBN 9780674725027

Publication Date: 02/10/2015


352 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

73 color illustrations, 18 tables

Belknap Press


In this crisp, evidence-based treatise, physicist Mara Prentiss makes a remarkable assertion: that solar and wind power could supply 100% of average U.S. energy needs for the next 50 years. Prentiss argues that a transition to renewables is probable, given that energy revolutions are a historical norm. She stacks up reams of salient data, such as the fact that U.S. energy use per capita has remained steady since 1965, thanks to increasing fuel efficiency. Although optimistic, her analyses of energy sources, combinations, conservation and storage compel.—Barbara Kiser, Nature

A surprisingly optimistic analysis of the world’s unsustainable, wasteful energy consumption… In a genre rife with forecasts of doom and exhortations in favor of frugal living, Prentiss provides impressive evidence that things may work out just fine.Kirkus Reviews

[Prentiss] steers a steady course between the wishful thinking and despair that so often colors discussions of energy. Carefully optimistic, the author thinks a combination of renewable power sources could meet 100 percent of the U.S. average total energy demand for the foreseeable future, even without waste reduction… Delightful, deadpan flashes of wit enliven the text throughout… Readers looking for answers on the feasibility of renewables will find the straight talk refreshing.—Robert Eagan, Library Journal

In this important book, Mara Prentiss brings basic physics to bear on the critical issue of how we produce and consume energy. Using extensive and illuminating graphics to augment her clear writing, she provides a reason for optimism about the role of renewables in our energy future.—Kenneth W. Ford, author of 101 Quantum Questions

With all the justified excitement around the fracking revolution it’s crucial not to lose sight of the ultimate importance of renewables and energy efficiency. Mara Prentiss has written a highly valuable, scientifically grounded guide to the great things that are possible in both these spheres.—Lawrence H. Summers, Charles W. Eliot University Professor and President Emeritus at Harvard University

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