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Energy, Environment, and Climate 1st Edition

5 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0393927634
ISBN-10: 0393927636
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Richard Wolfson is Benjamin F. Wissler Professor of Physics at Middlebury College, where he also teaches environmental studies. He holds a BA from Swarthmore, an MS in environmental studies from the University of Michigan, and Ph.D. in physics from Dartmouth. His research involves solar astrophysics and terrestrial climate change. Wolfson’s books include introductory physics texts as well as Nuclear Choices: A Citizen’s Guide to Nuclear Technology (MIT Press 1993) and Simply Einstein: Relativity Demystified (W.W. Norton 2003). He has produced four video courses for The Teaching Company: Einstein’s Relativity and the Quantum Revolution: Modern Physics for Nonscientists (1995 & 1999); Energy and Climate: Science for Citizens in the Age of Global Warming (1996); Physics in Your Life (2004); and Earth’s Changing Climate (2007).

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 532 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1 edition (February 16, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393927636
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393927634
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #712,830 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christopher T. Dahle on July 13, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm reading this textbook for a graduate school class in environmental biology for educators. I have worked through the first 10 chapters and have completed most of the exercises, review questions, and research problems in each chapter.

So far, I think Dr. Wolfson has fairly, accurately, and thoroughly presented basic facts about humanity's use of energy, the consequences of that use, the alternatives currently available, or technologically possible, and the costs and benefits of both our current energy supplies and proposed alternatives.

Dr. Wolfson does not display any bias toward any particular view of climate change or energy use. He instead provides the student with the mathematical tools needed to quantitatively analyze a broad body of well documented facts.

My only criticism is a mild one. Dr. Wolfson does say that his text requires only high school level algebra skills. I think that is accurate. Anyone who did reasonably well in high school algebra should be able to follow the text.

However, I do wish that in the beginning chapters, as he worked through the conversions and calculations of power, energy, and work, his examples had been just a bit more mathematically detailed. I could follow his explanations, but having not needed to do any dimensional analysis for the last 30 years, I was a bit sketchy on keeping my factors and labels straight as I worked through his examples and then tried to do the exercises. In some of his examples, he implies the completion of steps that he assumes his readers already understand.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Gilbert G. Faellaci on October 27, 2009
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I purchased this product because I have a DVD lecture series by the auther, Richard Wolfson, from the Teaching Company. The auther is a fantastic lecturer and can get his point across via the written word. I love it.
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Really well written, I learned a ton while teaching a course with this text. And I think he did a really good job at one of the hardest parts, which is giving a clear-eyed view of the pros and cons of nuclear power. In stark contrast to introductory physics texts (including Wolfson's own fine and concise Essential University Physics), this book is one where you really might want to spring for the latest edition.
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By James on November 15, 2014
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Well written and presented.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dman on October 19, 2013
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This book was required for a sustainable energy college course. This text has a ton of useful information in it but I do not see the need to keep it when all of the information can be found on the Internet. So, I bought the text, used it for a semester, then sold it back to bookholders.
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