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Power Shift: From Fossil Energy to Dynamic Solar Power by [Stayton, Robert Arthur]
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Power Shift: From Fossil Energy to Dynamic Solar Power Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 346 pages Word Wise: Enabled Language: English
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Product Description

Climate change researchers sometimes paint a bleak picture of our
current global-warming crisis, but rarely explain how we got into this
predicament in the first place and how we get out of it. Now, for the
first time, a new book does just that.

Power Shift: From Fossil Energy to Dynamic Solar Power
retells human history through the lens of energy, explains the science
behind the crisis--in clear, succinct language that anyone can
understand--and provides a detailed blueprint for the future, from
governmental, commercial, and individual perspectives. 

we've become mired in partisan bickering among politicians and oil, gas,
and coal lobbying interests who insist that fossil fuels are necessary
for jobs and the US economy.  However, this narrow debate has failed to
notice that the world has already embarked on a transformation in how we
use energy that is so fundamental, it defines a new Solar Epoch, as
monumental as the discovery of fire, the development of agriculture, and
the exploitation of fossil fuels in previous centuries.

truth is that solar power--getting radically cheaper by the year--is not
only a viable solution but, as the author states, "forms a clean energy
system that can completely replace fossil fuels.  We can gradually
phase them in so that in 50 years we'll be 100% solar-powered.  And
because solar energy does not run out like fossil fuels, we will never
need to go looking for another energy source again."

The book
also explores the related crises of out-of-control CO2 emissions from
fossil fuel burning: glacial melting; flooding; drought; ocean
acidification that threatens mass extinction of marine life; and the
often overlooked costs of rising food prices and military conflicts over
oil and other fossil fuels.

Unlike other books on global warming and solar energy, Power Shift
presents visionary plans for governments, corporations, and individuals
concerned about climate change. And the author has "put his money where
his mouth is." Having built a solar home in Santa Cruz County in 1997
and outfitted it with an off-grid solar photovoltaic (PV) system,
Stayton cites numerous personal examples to inspire others to take
similar action.
Destined to become a classic in the field, and
soon to be adopted as a basic text in college and university
environmental studies programs, Power Shift is an indispensable
reference for researchers and global leaders, a valuable staff training
tool for solar companies, and a compelling, inspirational read for
anyone eager to learn the truth about global warming and to participate
"from the ground up" in the new Solar Epoch.

Reader-friendly with beautiful illustrations and firmly grounded in current science, Power Shift
also forges a cautionary tale of what lies ahead if we don't start
acting now: "We seem to be waiting for a sign," Stayton writes, "a
sudden event so catastrophic that it compels us to overcome political
differences and take action.  However, this disaster does not rush upon
us like a hurricane, but instead slowly erodes our foundation, like
termites.  If we wait until the house collapses, we will have waited too

If you buy only one book on the topic of climate change
or solar power--for yourself, family, friends, or colleagues--you can
depend on Power Shift to serve as a comprehensive, eye-opening, educational resource for years to come.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 16620 KB
  • Print Length: 346 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Sandstone Publishing (12 April 2015)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00W0M0RJK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #691,049 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book shows a well researched path forward -- and explains why the planet is dragging it's feet!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.7 out of 5 stars 38 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The is a real eye opener that changed my view on energy 8 July 2015
By Doug Dittrich - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I frankly have not been a big believer in man-made global warming. I agree that we shouldn't actively pollute our air and water, but the whole CO2 scare seems more politically motivated than anything else and I don't like politicians. When you consider all of the extremes the world has faced in the past with ice ages and volcanic eruptions, the thought that we could create an earth altering change just didn't get my attention. By the end of the book my view on energy and the environment had changed.

What I really like about this book is the way Stayton logically and methodically examines the history of energy and the pros and cons associated with each form. He boils down difficult concepts into easily digestible content. At the end of the book you have no choice but to agree with his assertion that solar energy is our only long term viable option. Before reading his book, I made a purely economical decision to install roof top solar on my house. Global warming did not induce me to make the change, but dollars and cents did. In my estimation, this is what will make solar a reality. With solar prices continuing to fall and the efficiency of solar panels continuing to increase, the tipping point has been reached and I expect to see more and more people make a personal economic decision in favor of solar.

The next big thing will be storage. I agree with Stayton's premise that utility companies will become power storage and distribution companies, not power generation companies. Wind and solar can produce excess capacity mid-day, but we need large scale storage to reduce and eventually eliminate fossil fuels from our energy mix. The most difficult challenge is providing people an economical and practical alternative to a gasoline powered car. Tesla is blazing the trail here, but until I can replace my SUV with a full size electric vehicle that can go 300+ miles between charges and there is an array of available quick charging stations, I will stick to my gas guzzler.

I highly recommend this book. On three separate occasions, I have used the knowledge gained from this book to engage people in thoughtful conversation on the topic of energy and why solar is our only long term ticket.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's smart and thoughtful 24 May 2015
By Ryan Stayton - Published on
Verified Purchase
You need to read this book. It's smart and thoughtful, but more importantly it's useful in your everyday life today and essential for how we can sensibly change our wasteful, destructive lifestyles into making more sensible decisions that will steer us clear of a potentially disastrous future. Our continued reliance on today's energy sources is literally unsustainable.

Don't let the seemingly science-heavy tech talk scare you away from this all-too-important discussion. Stayton's science know-how educates instead of alienating less tech-savvy readers, which is paramount to the book's success since the subject matter pertains to every single living creature on earth.

Stayton poignantly explains how we got where we are today, what's stopped us from making the changes we need to make and how we can practically usher in this exciting new (though really it's not remotely new) technology. It's certainly not something that can happen overnight, but it is something that can start happening today with your help. Solar energy is increasingly cost-effective, years beyond necessary and the most abundant, reliable energy source we've had or will ever have. With a shift to solar, we won't have to worry about another sweeping energy change until we move to Mars.

It's chock full of quirky, insightful, entertaining nuggets of dinner party conversation fodder reminiscent of Malcolm Gladwell, par example:

* The first car built by Ferdinand Porsche was electric (1898).
* The average US city holds three days' worth of food on grocery shelves.
* Replacing every US farm tractor in use today with horses would require 250M horses.

This book will literally change your life, leaving you inspired, educated and armed to find easy, short term solutions plus longterm necessary solutions preserving the benefits we reap from modern technology without compromising future generations' quality of life.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So clear--a "must-read" 1 September 2015
By D. Brown - Published on
Verified Purchase
This is a pleasure to read from start to finish! The author's science background and clear, even-handed writing make this the best book around on our energy past and future. He shows how our learning to control energy (starting with fire) led to the development of human civilization, how the use of stored fossil fuels accelerated that development, and how switching to solar PV power can sustain it long into the future. He uses a clever "energy scope" to view events in terms of their energy flow, zooming out to see the big picture and zooming in to examine details. It's a great way to gain perspective and really make sense of our current energy choices.

One of the things I like about this book is its avoidance of hype and blame. It's about humans, energy and evidence--there are no bad guys, no name-calling, no suggestion we should not continue to enjoy using energy, and no preaching.

Stayton knows his stuff--he's a physicist with careers as both college professor and science writer. And he's lived in an off-grid PV-powered home for many years so he can write about solar from first-hand experience. Net result: great book--a "must-read" for anyone interested in energy, whether personal or global.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading for all 17 July 2015
By Ronald Joe Record - Published on
Verified Purchase
"Power Shift" really should be required reading for all. This book clearly and concisely explains the evolution of mankind's use of energy and the role of energy in our rise as dominant species of planet Earth.

Anyone involved in the climate debate or the impact of fossil fuel use on the climate should read this book. Our educators should read this book. In fact, I would recommend everybody read this book.

Don't think that because Stayton provides a clear and concise explanation of the science and evolution of energy use by humans that this book will not inform the scientific community. I have a Ph.D. in Mathematics, a rich history of study in the physical sciences, and a lifelong career as a computer scientist yet every page of this book managed to inform me in ways I had not previously connected.

This may be the most important book of our time. Read it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From "Bah Humbug" to solar power enthusiast in one concise book. 10 August 2015
By Jon of Knoxville TN - Published on
Verified Purchase
Call me a Bah Humbug of solar energy. That was until I read Power Shift by Robert Stayton.

The first part of the book sets the premise for his conclusions. You have to be educated to "energy eyes" when you look at your world. Once you put on these spectacles you see energy in a totally different light. ( No pun intended.) This really illuminated the need to switch from "heat" engines and machines with all their problems, to electric engines and machines with all their benefits. And guess what - you can power the later with solar!!!

Thought provoking book backed up with science and studies not fear tactics. Well done.

Jon Dittrich. Knoxville, Tennessee

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