Good sense on energy hasn't fled Washington entirely. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has struck down the Trump administration's bewildering proposal to subsidize coal-fired power for its "resilience" in the event of big storms or natural disasters. Making coal cheaper would have damaged health and cost lives by boosting air pollution, and made energy markets less efficient to boot.
FERC also saw no "resilience" rationale for subsidizing nuclear power, and its reasoning was again correct. Yet nuclear power is indeed needed -- not for its dependability, but for its lack of greenhouse-gas emissions. Energy policy ought to support nuclear power, though in the right way and for the right reasons.
Nuclear power is crucial to the effort to stop climate change. It safely provides about 20 percent of electricity in the U.S., and some 60 percent of clean energy. This share is poised to shrink. Five plants have closed before their time in recent years, and half a dozen more may also soon shut down.
When nuclear plants close, wind and solar power cannot pick up the slack. Instead power generators turn to coal and natural gas, increasing greenhouse-gas emissions. A smart, responsible energy policy would make addressing this problem a priority.
This is a compelling reason to protect it from the forces now nudging it out of the market -- chiefly, the low cost of natural gas.
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Addressing the sustainable energy crisis in an objective manner, this enlightening book analyzes the relevant numbers and organizes a plan for change on both a personal level and an international scale—for Europe, the United States, and the world. In case study format, this informative reference answers questions surrounding nuclear energy, the potential of sustainable fossil fuels, and the possibilities of sharing renewable power with foreign countries. While underlining the difficulty of minimizing consumption, the tone remains positive as it debunks misinformation and clearly explains the calculations of expenditure per person to encourage people to make individual changes that will benefit the world at large.
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The second edition of a widely used textbook that explores energy resource options and technologies with a view toward achieving sustainability on local, national, and global scales.
Human survival depends on a continuing supply of energy, but the need for ever-increasing amounts of it poses a dilemma: How can we find energy sources that are sustainable and ways to convert and utilize energy that are more efficient? This widely used textbook is designed for advanced undergraduate and graduate students as well as others who have an interest in exploring energy resource options and technologies with a view toward achieving sustainability on local, national, and global scales. It clearly presents the tradeoffs and uncertainties inherent in evaluating and choosing sound energy portfolios and provides a framework for assessing policy solutions.
The second edition examines the broader aspects of energy use, including resource estimation, environmental effects, and economic evaluations; reviews the main energy sources of today and tomorrow, from fossil fuels and nuclear power to biomass, hydropower, and solar energy; treats energy carriers and energy storage, transmission, and distribution; addresses end-use patterns in the transportation, industrial, and building sectors; and considers synergistic complex systems. This new edition also offers updated statistical data and references; a new chapter on the complex interactions among energy, water, and land use; expanded coverage of renewable energy; and new color illustrations. Sustainable Energy addresses the challenges of making responsible energy choices for a more sustainable future.