How can we provide clean, safe, sustainable energy supplies for the world despite rising population levels and increasing economic development? Today, energy and sustainability are of primary concern and form the focus of this book and its companion volume, Renewable Energy.
Interdisciplinary in its approach and global in its perspective, this book provides a contemporary exploration of the economic, social, environmental, and policy issues raised by current systems of energy use, as well as describing their key physical and engineering features. The historical evolution of the world's energy systems, the principles underlying their use, and their present status and future prospects are analysed, while emphasizing the important issue of sustainability.
Beginning with a survey of basic energy concepts, the book describes the magnitude and patterns of human energy needs at various levels. Focus then turns to an overview of the fossil and nuclear-fuelled energy that, together with hydroelectric power and traditional biofuels, supply most of the world's commercial energy needs. Sections on economics describes the basic methods by which the monetary costs of energy are calculated, and discuss the issue of 'external' costs of energy production. The concluding chapters consider the sustainabliity problems associated with both fossil and nuclear fuel use, and ways in which they might be ameliorated by various technological and social developments. This is done in the context of a rising use of renewable energy.
· Extensive coverage of the important concepts and issues underpinning modern energy production and its future prospects
· Adopts an interdisciplinary approach making the text readable by engineer and policy maker alike