Gy flows as well as researchers and writers who would like to double check their assumptions about energy systems updated 2009 01 29 154327 EST not finished yet but will be after classes wow wow wow this book is so incredibly awesome and touches me so deeply why isn t vaclav smil president of some major nation and what s up with Czechoslovakia having so many presidents named vaclav BECAUSE HE S TOO DAMN BUSY BEING THE FINEST SCIENTIFIC AUTHOR IN THE WORLD THAT S WHY this book is dense with
Beautiful Information As To connective information as to me sing you can find the preface online i urge you all 107 of you come gather round Uncle Nick as he opens the Great Book of Energy Balances to read at least this excerpt Energy is the only life and isfrom the Body and Reason is the bound or outwardcircumference of Energy Energy is Eternal DelightWilliam Blake The Marriage of Heaven and Hell 1793Energy s definition in Blake s poem comes from the Devil as he corrects what he feels to be one of the principal errors of sacred codes namely That Energy call d Evil is alone from the Body that Reason call d Good is alone from the Soul This book is preoccupied with pragmatic and less contentious propositions but it too owes its existence to
fascination with energy s elusive ualitiesAt the same time this is also a very personal book My fascination with energetics with energy s elusive ualitiesAt the same time this is also a very personal book My fascination with energetics been going on for than 40 years and new topics keep coming into closer focus My interest in planetary energy flows and in bioenergetics started with university studies of climatology geomorphology zoology and ecology and these fields were soon augmented by work on energy economics coal mining and power plant engineering Principal themes of my published energy research have been chronologically thermal electricity generation acid deposition coal mining and internationalization of energy supply in the 1960s atmospheric CO2 modeling evolution and forecasting of energy techniues energy economy correlations and energy in China and other poor populous countries in the 1970s biomass energies grand biospheric cycles energy analysis in agriculture energy in agriculture and in human nutrition energy in world history and global dimensions of energetics in the 1980s and 1990s Ok explores not only planetary energetics such as solar radiation and geomorphic processes and bioenergetics photosynthesis for example but also human energetics such as metabolism and thergulation tracing them from hunter gatherer and agricultural societies through modern day industrial civilization Included are chapters on heterotrophic conversions traditional agriculture preindustrial complexification fossil fuels fossil fueled civilization the energetics of food and the implications of energetics for the environment The book concludes with an examination of general patterns trends and socioeconomic considerations of energy use today looki. .
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Nd during the first years of a new millennium energy s role in the creation and transformation of modern civilizationA strong commonality tying these interests has been my fascination with unruly and
"fuzzy realities in "realities in to abstract models and dubious generalizations Complexities and peculiarities of the real world and counterintuitive outcomes of many of its processes have seemed to me always appealing than theoretical models This Preference Reuires A From The Ground Up Approach Where Gradual reuires a from the ground up approach where gradual of details and cumulative acuisition of the widest possible scope of information precedes any attempts at generalization Inevitably this book is marked by these interests and
biases but I have done my best to offer a balanced andbut I have done my best to offer a balanced and treatment free of excessive indulgence in favorite topicsThe aims are broad interdisciplinary coverage richness of detail clear analyses syntheses rooted in the presented information and commonsense generalizations The means is a systematic and evolutionary account but one whose boundaries and flavors are also clearly influenced by my scientific background preferences and lifelong fascinations and inclinations The book takes ust one of many possible routes to better understanding of energy in nature and in human societies and its inherent sweep and complexity mean that it cannot be devoid of lapses and errors But even if it were to fall far short of its ambitious mark there is as always consolation in the wisdom of an ancient sage Lao Zi noting that it is void space that makes bowls and houses useful wrote So advantage is hadFrom whatever is there But usefulness risesFrom whatever is notfreakin awesome 2009 01 25 I m going ahead and picking up everything of Vaclav Smil s save obvious pop science the man s the finest geophysicist and earth scientist writing today His The Earth s Biosphere was magnificent the best treatment I ve seen of the subject to date I hear wonderful things about Energy in Nature and Society and can t wait to tear into it When and if I head north for my PhD at MIT or Harvard I d definitely like to hang out with him for a lunch or two treatise on how energy drives all and surprisingly has been misappropriated by new agey crackpot. Ng at correlations between energy and value energy and the economy energy and uality of life and energy futures Throughout the book Smil chooses to emphasize the complexities and peculiarities of the real world and the counterintuitive outcomes of many of its processes over abstract models Energy in Nature and Society provides a uniue comprehensive single volume analysis and reference source on all important energy matters from natural to industrial energy flows from fuels to food from the Earth's formation to possible energy futures and can serve as a text for courses in energy studies global ecology earth systems science biology and chemist. .
Vaclav Smil has been writing on energy for some time A subject like energy is a systems topic with lots of stats and charts about energy use production and growth and change For people who are interested in the physical patterns of earth and human civilization they will get much from this book which places our lives our communities politics and way of life in the context of greater physical transformations and forces It is not a bodice ripper but can be enlightening and pleasurable to see the grand scheme for a certain kind of person who wants to order their cosmos This is an ambitious but accessible introduction to a holistic anatomy of energy flows in both the past and present It is also I
"think a good "a good point into Smil s vast collection of energy related books if one is not sure where to begin Smil has a great gift for explaining a plethora and I mean plethora of technical concepts in a lively clear and concise manner to the non technically trained reader There are boatloads of numbers and figures in the text but these have been inserted mainly to illustrate a concept The book digests easier if one keeps this in mind while reading Because the book is so well structured from top to bottom it makes for a useful reference guide most people will probably prefer using it this way given reading time constraintsIt appears that there are significant overlaps between this book and some of Smil s other work For example several key parts of General Energetics have been expanded on in Prime Movers 2010 and this current work also seems to have re used some content from his Energy at the Crossroads 2003 Proofreading was also A Bit Sloppy Parts bit sloppy parts General Energetics contain obvious grammatical errors and missing wordsIn addition those hoping to find accounts of possible futures such as those involving distributed generation
systems and societal restructuring will be disappointed at how briefly Smil treats theseand societal restructuring will be disappointed at how briefly Smil treats these especially given how much he obviously knows about what is feasible and what isn t at a technical systems level pp 356 63 Maybe these are covered in detail in his other workWith those caveats in mind this volume is still highly recommended both for those seeking a technical introduction to ener. A comprehensive systematic analytically unified and interdisciplinary treatment of energy in nature and society from solar radiation and photosynthesis to our fossil fuelled civilization and its environmental conseuences Energy in Nature and Society is a systematic and exhaustive analysis of all the major energy sources storages flows and conversions that have shaped the evolution of the biosphere and civilization Vaclav Smil uses fundamental unifying metrics most notably for power density and energy intensity to provide an integrated framework for analyzing all segments of energetics the study of energy flows and their transformations The bo.