skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Choices in the next energy and social revolution. [For development of solar as against nuclear fusion]

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to provide a context for choosing the energy system that will replace fossil fuels. As fossil fuels, the energy source of industrialization, are depleted, the world enters into the third most important energy and social revolution in the development of civilization. Natural and social systems operate under the same principles of energy management. Growth, stability, or decline is determined by the interdependent relationship between energy and structure (Energy in Natural and Social Systems). The evolution of civilization over more than a million years can be seen as a successful quest to control greater amounts of energy through social organization in three different energy and social systems: hunting and gathering, agriculture, and fossil fuels (Two Energy and Social Revolutions). Many nations based on different energy and social structures have flourished and disappeared throughout history. The cases of Egypt, Rome, and Britain are used to illustrate the dynamic forces that affect the rise and fall of empires, dependence on foreign resources, and the changing purposes of social organization (The Influence of Energy on Nations). The energy perspective of the paper suggests the relationship between continuous growth and social discontinuity in U.S. history (Continuous Growth and Socialmore » Discontinuity in the U.S.). The physical and social consequences of future energy alternatives are discussed in terms of an Orwellian, Jeffersonian, and Malthusian type future (The Third Revolution: Orwell, Jefferson, or Malthus). The paper concludes with an endorsement of solar energy as the alternative most likely to afford a stable future in a humanly organized environment.« less

Authors:
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Massachusetts Inst. of Tech., Cambridge (USA). Alfred P. Sloan School of Management
OSTI Identifier:
5213126
Report Number(s):
TID-28197
DOE Contract Number:  
EX-76-A-01-2195-028
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY AND ECONOMY; 14 SOLAR ENERGY; ENERGY SOURCE DEVELOPMENT; SOCIAL IMPACT; FUEL SUBSTITUTION; SOLAR ENERGY CONVERSION; AGRICULTURE; AVAILABILITY; ENERGY MANAGEMENT; FOSSIL FUELS; GLOBAL ASPECTS; INDUSTRY; INTERCHANGEABILITY; PHYSICAL PROPERTIES; THERMONUCLEAR REACTIONS; CONVERSION; ENERGY CONVERSION; ENERGY SOURCES; FUELS; MANAGEMENT; NUCLEAR REACTIONS; NUCLEOSYNTHESIS; 299001* - Energy Planning & Policy- Solar- (1989-); 140000 - Solar Energy

Citation Formats

Ryan, C J. Choices in the next energy and social revolution. [For development of solar as against nuclear fusion]. United States: N. p., 1977. Web.
Ryan, C J. Choices in the next energy and social revolution. [For development of solar as against nuclear fusion]. United States.
Ryan, C J. Thu . "Choices in the next energy and social revolution. [For development of solar as against nuclear fusion]". United States.
@article{osti_5213126,
title = {Choices in the next energy and social revolution. [For development of solar as against nuclear fusion]},
author = {Ryan, C J},
abstractNote = {The purpose of this paper is to provide a context for choosing the energy system that will replace fossil fuels. As fossil fuels, the energy source of industrialization, are depleted, the world enters into the third most important energy and social revolution in the development of civilization. Natural and social systems operate under the same principles of energy management. Growth, stability, or decline is determined by the interdependent relationship between energy and structure (Energy in Natural and Social Systems). The evolution of civilization over more than a million years can be seen as a successful quest to control greater amounts of energy through social organization in three different energy and social systems: hunting and gathering, agriculture, and fossil fuels (Two Energy and Social Revolutions). Many nations based on different energy and social structures have flourished and disappeared throughout history. The cases of Egypt, Rome, and Britain are used to illustrate the dynamic forces that affect the rise and fall of empires, dependence on foreign resources, and the changing purposes of social organization (The Influence of Energy on Nations). The energy perspective of the paper suggests the relationship between continuous growth and social discontinuity in U.S. history (Continuous Growth and Social Discontinuity in the U.S.). The physical and social consequences of future energy alternatives are discussed in terms of an Orwellian, Jeffersonian, and Malthusian type future (The Third Revolution: Orwell, Jefferson, or Malthus). The paper concludes with an endorsement of solar energy as the alternative most likely to afford a stable future in a humanly organized environment.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {1977},
month = {7}
}

Technical Report:
Other availability
Please see Document Availability for additional information on obtaining the full-text document. Library patrons may search WorldCat to identify libraries that may hold this item. Keep in mind that many technical reports are not cataloged in WorldCat.

Save / Share: