Energy Return on Investment: A Unifying Principle for Biology, Economics, and Sustainability - Lecture Notes in Energy 36 (Hardback)
  • Energy Return on Investment: A Unifying Principle for Biology, Economics, and Sustainability - Lecture Notes in Energy 36 (Hardback)
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Energy Return on Investment: A Unifying Principle for Biology, Economics, and Sustainability - Lecture Notes in Energy 36 (Hardback)

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Hardback 174 Pages / Published: 06/12/2016
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This authoritative but highly accessible book presents the reader with a powerful framework for understanding the critical role of the energy return on investment (EROI) in the survival and well-being of individuals, ecosystems, businesses, economies and nations. Growth and development are fundamental and ubiquitous processes at all scales, from individuals to food crops to national economies. While we are all familiar with the concepts of economic growth and living standards as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), we often take for granted the energy use that underpins GDP and our expectations for year-on-year growth. In this book, you will learn how these measures of "progress" are completely dependent on the balance that can be achieved between energy costs (inputs) and gains. Nothing is made or moved without an energy surplus, and it is the EROI of available energy sources more than any other single factor that determines the shape of civilization.
Nearly all politics and economics assume that policy and market forces are the levers upon which future outcomes will hinge. However, this book presents many examples of historical and current events that can be explained much more clearly from an energetic perspective. In addition, a future scenario is developed that gives a central place to EROI in assessing the potential of governmental and private initiatives to substitute so-called renewable energy sources for diminishing stocks of fossil fuels. When cheap fossil fuels are no longer available in the abundance needed to mask economic problems and power business as usual, it will be EROI more than the plethora of "green" technologies that creates the boundary conditions for a sustainable future.

Publisher: Springer International Publishing AG
ISBN: 9783319478203
Number of pages: 174
Weight: 4085 g
Dimensions: 235 x 155 x 13 mm
Edition: 1st ed. 2017


MEDIA REVIEWS

"The book Energy Return on Investment, self-deprecatingly put forth as a nontechnical `story,' succeeds in providing a cohesive and intellectually rigorous theory that transcends economics and biology. ...I highly recommend this book to policymakers and the business community to more accurately forecast the future, as well as to engineers and scientists of all disciplines. ... Energy Return on Investment is technically relevant and written with accessible language." (John R. Schramski, BioScience, July, 2018)


"In Energy Return on Investment, systems ecologist Charles A. S. Hall argues that to truly understand most investments, one must view them in terms of energy. ... Energy Return on Investment is a solid introduction to a vital subject, and Hall is uniquely qualified to author it. Hall invented the very term energy return on investment, and he's done decades of seminal research on the phenomenon that it describes." (Frank Kaminski, resilience.org, April, 2018)

"In Energy Return on Investment, Dr. Hall has written an approachable and short introduction to how energy flows through and structures our world, ecosystems, and society. ... Energy Return on Investment is an excellent primer with which to understand the world around us and make good investment choices for ourselves and the generations to come." (Jon Freise, Resilience, resilience.org, June, 2017)

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