Energy Abundance vs. the Poverty of Energy Literacy

Energy is all around us and we consume copious quantities of it. We only question it when it’s expensive or not there. Therein lies a challenge for politics and society.

In the midst of all the debate over fossil fuels, we seem to have forgotten this fundamental role of energy in life. We think that all we need energy for is to drive our cars, fly around the world, run our electrical gadgets. But more important is that abundant energy is necessary for our way of life, for our civilization.

If that energy were to vanish, we would find ourselves once again living at the margin, and might well see the end of many things that we don’t associate with an energy supply, including democracy and the freedom and creativity that leisure makes possible.

Editor’s note: This essay is the first in a series that will explore issues in energy literacy and energy policy.



Interesting article. There is 4 times as much Argon gas in the atmosphere as CO2. Mars has 20% more CO2 in it's atmosphere than Earth. And Earth has 3.54 times more surface area than Mars. Most energy shortages are purely political. Including north Africa.