Essay: Wasted Energy Resources

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Energy

The Waste of Energy Resources

In the race through the industrialization process -- which actually took close to two hundred years for the developed world -- enormous amounts of fossil fuels have been burned that could have been used more sparingly and efficiently (WRI 2009). It is not clear, however, whether the same achievements in the growth of wealth and the (supposedly) higher quality of life enjoyed by citizens in the developed world could have been brought into existence if not for this rampant use of energy. It has also been argued that without the extensive and inefficient use of energy of the past centuries, we would not have arrived at a point where energy had the capability of being so efficiently produced and used as it can be today.

This last argument is either taking a naive view of history or is being deliberately disingenuous. Before the advent of fossil fuels, energy was incredibly efficient -- all of it was supplied wither directly by man or by the forces of nature (mostly wind and gravity). Without the use of any electricity or fossil fuels, the Romans were able to transport water throughout much of their empire and merchants were able to trade goods across vast distances for only the cost of feeding their crew. The voyages took longer and goods were more expensive because of it, it is… [END OF PREVIEW]

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