In this Book

Power to the People
summary

Power to the People examines the varied but interconnected relationships between energy consumption and economic development in Europe over the last five centuries. It describes how the traditional energy economy of medieval and early modern Europe was marked by stable or falling per capita energy consumption, and how the First Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth century--fueled by coal and steam engines--redrew the economic, social, and geopolitical map of Europe and the world. The Second Industrial Revolution continued this energy expansion and social transformation through the use of oil and electricity, but after 1970 Europe entered a new stage in which energy consumption has stabilized. This book challenges the view that the outsourcing of heavy industry overseas is the cause, arguing that a Third Industrial Revolution driven by new information and communication technologies has played a major stabilizing role.

Power to the People offers new perspectives on the challenges posed today by climate change and peak oil, demonstrating that although the path of modern economic development has vastly increased our energy use, it has not been a story of ever-rising and continuous consumption. The book sheds light on the often lengthy and complex changes needed for new energy systems to emerge, the role of energy resources in economic growth, and the importance of energy efficiency in promoting growth and reducing future energy demand.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Title Page, Copyright
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. v-vii
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. 1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-16
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  1. 2. Definitions and Concepts
  2. pp. 17-34
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  1. Part I: Pre-Industrial Economies
  2. pp. 35-36
  1. 3. Traditional Sources
  2. pp. 37-80
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  1. 4. Constraints and Dynamics
  2. pp. 81-128
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  1. Part II: The First Industrial Revolution
  2. pp. 129-130
  1. 5. A Modern Energy Regime
  2. pp. 131-158
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  1. 6. The Coal Development Block
  2. pp. 159-208
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  1. 7. Energy and Industrial Growth
  2. pp. 209-248
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  1. Part III: The Second and Third Industrial Revolutions
  2. pp. 249-250
  1. 8. Energy Transitions in the Twentieth Century
  2. pp. 251-286
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  1. 9. Major Development Blocks in the Twentieth Century and Their Impacts on Energy
  2. pp. 287-332
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  1. 10. The Role of Energy in Twentieth-Century Economic Growth
  2. pp. 333-365
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  1. 11. Summary and Implications for the Future
  2. pp. 366-386
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  1. A. The Role of Energy in Growth Accounting
  2. pp. 387-394
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  1. B. Decomposing Energy Intensity 1870–1970
  2. pp. 395-401
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  1. C. The Impact from the Service Transition on Energy Intensity
  2. pp. 402-410
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  1. D. Biased Technical Development
  2. pp. 411-414
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  1. References
  2. pp. 415-450
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 451-460
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