Saturday, August 29, 2009

The future of energy

The International Herald Tribune and New York Times published an article featuring my energy consumption versus population density diagram.
Here is the article -
Illuminating the Future of Energy
and here are several alternative versions I made of the diagram -


Unknown said...

As a prospective student of sustainable development at Duaphine University in Paris, I greatly appreciated this article. I hope that this is the kind of reading and approach (objective, coherent) that will be offered if I am accepted for this masters. Thanks! ~Paloma

Andrew Smith-Gibbs said...

Oh dear. Despite the comments on the previous post, the chart still only use land area, which explicitly creates a presentational bias against those countries such as Britain that have most of their renewable resources out at sea. I can see why the New York Times might want to talk down Britain in this way, but can't see why a British author would.

And once again, I'll note that contrary to what's shown in the chart, Britain's energy demand is below 100KWh per person per day - the only way to get a figure above that is to include all the wasted energy from inefficient old technologies like coal and nuclear, that gets squandered in power-station cooling: energy that was never part of demand - these are supply-side inefficiences, not demand-side.

One would hope that these are just unfortunate repeated oversights.

Andrew Smith-Gibbs said...

And warm congratulations on your appointment as Chief Scientific Officer to DECC

Ray Lightning said...

David.. I don't understand why you are not strongly advocating nuclear power. The numbers you compute make this crystal clear. Nuclear power is the best bet of all choices we've to combat global warming.

Or do you think the large-scale constructional effort that you describe is indeed possible all over the world before climate tipping points are broken ?