Energy Policy

  • Thermal pollution Featured Article Thermal pollution Thermal pollution

    Thermal pollution is the act of altering the temperature of a natural water body, which may be a river, lake or ocean environment. This condition chiefly arises from the... More »

  • Dark side of insulation Featured Article Dark side of insulation Dark side of insulation

    Building insulation has become a modish activity in the western world since the 1980s. Considerable benefits can accrue in energy conservation, occupant comfort and reduction of... More »

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Renewable electricity politics across borders Last Updated on 2014-10-28 11:54:29 It is now widely accepted that many of the systems for generating electricity in place worldwide are unsustainable. In spite of helping to create unprecedented levels of economic wealth, a predominant reliance upon large, centralized power stations, largely “fueled” by fossil fuels and uranium connected to a web of transmission and distribution lines, has a number of negative consequences as well. One of the most significant of those sustainability impacts is the effect that systems of electricity supply have on global climate change. With 66 percent of the world’s commercial electricity generated by fossil fuels in 2003 (including 40 percent of the total by coal), conventional methods to generate power are serving to increase carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere (and, though to a lesser extent, also serving to increase concentrations of other greenhouse... More »
Bockris, John O’M. Last Updated on 2013-10-31 01:06:04   John O’M. Bockris, an Australian electrochemist, coined the term “hydrogen economy” in the 1970s. Bockris’ hydrogen economy describes a system in which hydrogen would be used to transport energy from renewable sources over large distances and store it in large amounts. In 1962, Bockris first proposed a plan to supply US cities with solar-derived energy via hydrogen. In 1971, he published the first article on hydrogen in a referred journal. Bockris published Energy: The Solar-Hydrogen Alternative in 1975, one of the first detailed description of what a solar-hydrogen economy would look like. Further Reading History of Hydrogen Timeline (National Hydrogen Association) More »
Climate change abatement strategies Last Updated on 2013-09-17 22:17:22 Climate Change Abatement Strategies: Which Way Is the Wind Blowing? This article, authored by David C. Holzman[1], appeared first in Environmental Health Perspectives—the peer-reviewed, open access journal of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. The article is a verbatim version of the original and is not available for edits or additions by Encyclopedia of Earth editors or authors. Companion articles on the same topic that are editable may exist within the Encyclopedia of Earth.     The mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, already one hot topic, got even hotter with the 16 June 2009 publication of the White House report Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States. “Choices made about emissions reductions now and over the next few decades will have far-reaching consequences for climate-change impacts,” warned the... More »
Land use profile of China Last Updated on 2013-08-25 16:46:51 The story of land use in China over the last century is as dramatic as the tale of the country's radical economic transformation. Endless acres of rural lands, that just a few decades ago were farmed by peasant collectives as part of Mao Zedong's massive agricultural campaigns, today host brand new condominium developments, as China's cities rapidly fan out past their existing boundaries. Giant factories dot the countryside in even the most remote provinces and manufacture all sorts of goods for export into the international market. In many ways, this process of shifting landscapes indicates an accumulation of wealth in regions that still suffer considerably from high poverty rates. The human cost of the rural construction boom can often be measured in the number of displaced peasant families, who typically have little recourse to prevent the repurposing of their... More »
Science and Technology Issues in the 113th Congress Last Updated on 2013-08-07 11:09:36 This article is drawn from CRS Report R43114: Science and Technology Issues in the 113th Congress by Frank Gottron, June 20, 2013 Science and technology have a pervasive influence over a wide range of issues confronting the nation. Public and private research and development spurs scientific and technological advancement. Such advances can drive economic growth, help address national priorities, and improve health and quality of life. The constantly changing nature and ubiquity of science and technology frequently creates public policy issues of congressional interest. The federal government supports scientific and technological advancement by directly funding research and development and indirectly by creating and maintaining policies that encourage private sector efforts. Additionally, the federal government establishes and enforces regulatory frameworks... More »