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A breakdown of current energy sources shows that approximately 80% of the world's primary energy comes from fossil fuels. The book provides an assessment of the needs to change the way in which energy is produced and utilized. The reasons for change fall into two broad categories; diminishing resources and environmental impact. The Hubbert model is described as a means of projecting availability of fossil fuel energy resources in the future. The environmental impact of fossil fuel use is described, with particular emphasis on global climate change. The major options for carbon-free energy are presented. These options include hydroelectric energy and solar energy for both thermal applications and the production of electricity, wind energy, and biofuels. Renewable energy options that range from residential wind turbines and photovoltaics for electricity and solar thermal heating systems to grid scale facilities, such as off-shore wind farms and hydroelectric installations, are discussed. The production of biofuels as a replacement for fossil fuels used for transportation is also presented. The book also provides evidence for the need to develop energy storage technologies. Energy storage is essential for most forms of renewable energy because the thermal or electrical energy produced by such sources is generally not available when it is needed, nor is it sufficiently portable for transportation applications.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781681735986
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