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Energy, Complexity and Wealth Maximization

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This book is about the mechanisms of wealth creation, or what we like to think of as evolutionary "progress." The massive circular... Weiterlesen
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This book is about the mechanisms of wealth creation, or what we like to think of as evolutionary "progress." The massive circular flow of goods and services between producers and consumers is not a perpetual motion machine; it has been dependent for the past 150 years on energy inputs from a finite storage of fossil fuels. In this book, you will learn about the three key requirements for wealth creation, and how this process acts according to physical laws, and usually after some part of the natural wealth of the planet has been exploited in an episode of "creative destruction." Knowledge and natural capital, particularly energy, will interact to power the human wealth engine in the future as it has in the past. Will it sputter or continue along the path of evolutionary progress that we have come to expect? Can the new immaterial wealth of information and ideas, which makes up the so-called knowledge economy, replace depleted natural wealth? These questions have no simple answers, but this masterful book will help you to understand the grand challenge of our time.
Praise for Energy, Complexity and Wealth Maximization:
... people who run the modern world (politicians, economists and lawyers) have a very poor grasp of how it really works because they do not understand the fundamentals of energy, exergy and entropy ... those decision-makers would greatly benefit from reading this book ... - Vaclav Smil, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, University of Manitoba
... A grandiose design; impressive, worth reading and reflecting! - Prof. Dr. Ernst Ulrich von Weizäcker, Founder of Wuppertal Institute; Co-President of the Club of Rome, Former Member of the German Bundestag, co-chair of the UN's Resource Panel
... The book is a must read for concerned citizens and decision makers across the globe. - RK Pachauri, Founder and Executive Vice Chairman, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and ex-chair, International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)

Offers a first-principles view of the history of wealth creation

Shows the unity of the disciplines, from physics and biology to economics, for understanding the requirements of wealth creation

Explains the interactions of information and natural resource flows in the human economy

Highlights the need for business and political leaders to understand basic science, particularly the laws of thermodynamics, in order to make good decisions

Professor Ayres holds a PhD in Mathematical Physics from Kings College, University of London, a MSc in Physics from the University of Maryland and a BA, BSc from the University of Chicago. He is currently Emeritus Professor of Economics and Political Science and of Technology and Operations Management at INSEAD, the international graduate business school.

He joined INSEAD in 1992, becoming the first Novartis Chair of Management and the Environment, as well as the founder of CMER, Center for the Management of Environmental Resources. He directed CMER from 1992-2000. Since retirement he has been a visiting professor at Chalmers Institute of Technology in Sweden (where he was also a King's Professor) and Institute Scholar at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) in Austria, He remains active, producing publications on topics ranging from Industrial Metabolisms and Industrial Ecology, through Environmental Policy and Environmental Economics, to Energy. Professor Ayres is the author or coauthor of 21 books, most recently including The Economic Growth Engine (2009, with Benjamin Warr), Crossing the Energy Divide (2009, with Edward Ayres) and The Bubble Economy (2014).

Preface.- Glossary of terms.- Glossary of people.- PART I.- CHAPTER 1. A BRIEF HISTORY OF IDEAS: ENERGY, ENTROPY AND EVOLUTION.- 1.1. Aristotle, Descartes, Newton and Leibnitz.- 1.2. Heat: caloric vs phlogiston.- 1.3. The birth of thermodynamics and statistical mechanics.- 1.4. Chemistry: from Lavoisier to Gibbs.- 1.5. Electricity and electromagnetism.- 1.6. Geology and Earth science.- 1.7. Darwin and biological evolution.- 1.8. Ecology.- 1.9. Entropy, exergy, order and information.- 1.10. Monism, energetics and economics.- CHAPTER 2. THE COSMOS, THE SUN AND THE EARTH.- 2.1. Relativity, quantum mechanics and astronomy.- 2.2 The black hole in physics.- 2.3 Nucleosynthesis: Love among the nucleons.- 2.4. The Sun and solar system.- 2.5. The elements needed to sustain life (and technology).- 2.6. The terra-forming of Earth.- 2.7. The long-term future of Planet Earth.- 2.8 Summary of pre-biotic evolution.- CHAPTER 3. THE ORIGIN OF LIFE.- 3.1. Exogenesis?.- 3.2. The origin of organic monomers.- 3.3. From monomers to polymers.- 3.4. Self-replication of macromolecules (genes).- 3.5. Genetic code: RNA and DNA.- 3.6. Information transfer: the genetic code.- 3.7. Oxygen photosynthesis.- 3.8. The Great Oxidation and the invention of respiration.- 3.9. Evolution before the Cambrian explosion.- 3.10. The Cambrian explosion.- 3.11. Since the asteroid.- 3.12 Down from the trees.- CHAPTER 4. ENERGY, WATER, CLIMATE AND CYCLES.- 4.1. The Earth's energy (exergy) balance.- 4.2. The hydrological cycle.- 4.3. Ocean currents and atmospheric circulation.- 4.4. Climate change.- 4.5. Bio-geochemical cycles.- 4.6. The carbon-oxygen cycle.- 4.7. The nitrogen cycle.- 4.8. The sulfur cycle.- 4.9. The phosphorus cycle.- 4.10. Thermodynamic dis-equilibrium.- Summary of Part I: From the Big Bang to nutrient cycles.- PART II.- CHAPTER 5. ENERGY AND TECHNOLOGY.- 5.1. The enhancement of skin.- 5.2. The taming of fire.- 5.3.Transmission of knowledge: writing and replication.- 5.4. The dawn of civilization and the beginning of agriculture.- 5.5. Agricultural surplus and cities.- 5.6. Slavery and conquest.- 5.7. Money and coinage.- 5.8. Productive technology.- CHAPTER 6. THE NEW WORLD AND SCIENCE.- 6.1. The discovery of the New World.- 6.2. From charcoal and iron to coal and steel.- 6.3. Gunpowder and cannons.- 6.4. Steam power.- 6.5. Town gas, coal tar, aniline dyes and ammonia synthesis.- 6.6. Petroleum.- 6.7. The internal (infernal) combustion engine.- 6.8. Electrification and communications.- 6.9 Telecommunication and digital technology.- 6.9. The demographic transition: the final disproof of Malthus or a prelude?.- CHAPTER 7. ENERGY, TECHNOLOGY AND THE FUTURE.- 7.1. This time is different.- 7.2. Peak Oil.- 7.3. More on fracking: Is it a game changer?.- 7.4. The inevitable decline of the internal combustion engine.- 7.5 On opportunities for energy efficiency gains by systems integration..- 7.6. Renewables for heat and electric power generation.- PART III.- CHAPTER 8. MAINSTREAM ECONOMICS AND ENERGY.- 8.1. Core ideas in economic theory.- 8.2 On credit, collateral, virtual money and banking.- 8.3 On externalities.- 8.4. Economics as social science.- 8.5. Resources and economics.- 8.6.Resource discoveries as technology incubators.- 8.7. On the geology of resources: scarcity again?.- 8.8. The special case of petroleum.- 8.9. The role of resources in standard economic theory.- CHAPTER 9. NEW PERSPECTIVES ON CAPITAL, WORK, AND WEALTH.- 9.1. Active vs passive capital.- 9.2. Exergy, useful work and production functions.- 9.3. Wealth as condensed work and useful complexity.- 9.4. Debt: The downside of financial wealth creation.- 9.5. The direct costs of economic growth.- 9.6. More on economic growth: cycles and bubbles.- 9.7. Planetary limits: The downside of material wealth creation.- 9.8. The circular economy and the limits to growth.- 9.9. A Trifecta?.- Epilogue.- APPENDIX. ENERGY IN GROWTH THEORY.- A.1. Introduction.- A.2. Growth equations.- A.3. A new variable: Useful work U.- A.4. The choice of production function.- A.5. Statistical analysis of the time series.- A.6. Results.- A.7. Conclusion.- References.


Titel: Energy, Complexity and Wealth Maximization
Untertitel: The Frontiers Collection
EAN: 9783319305448
ISBN: 978-3-319-30544-8
Format: Fester Einband
Herausgeber: Springer, Berlin
Genre: Technik
Anzahl Seiten: 593
Gewicht: 1051g
Größe: H41mm x B241mm x T162mm
Jahr: 2016
Auflage: 1st ed. 2016
Land: GB

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