The Unpopular Truth about Electricity and the Future of Energy (Paperback)

The Unpopular Truth about Electricity and the Future of Energy By Willam Hayden Smith, Lars Schernikau Cover Image

The Unpopular Truth about Electricity and the Future of Energy (Paperback)


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"The Unpopular Truth... about Electricity and the Future of Energy"

Electricity is to modern civilization what blood is to the human body. Understanding how electricity works is more critical than ever as its importance grows with the increasing electrification of transport, industry, and heating.

Dr. Lars Schernikau and Prof. Bill Smith have created a comprehensive overview of how the global energy economy works with a focus on electricity. This new book explains the fundamental reasons for the energy shortages that the world (particularly Europe) started to experience since 2021, which was exacerbated by Russia's invasion of the Ukraine in 2022. In doing so, the authors describe - for our electricity markets - what can work and what never will.

This book is not only an introduction to modern electricity systems and electricity costs, but it also touches on primary energy and transportation. The authors focus more on the generation of electricity from a macroeconomic "energy transition" point of view and less on the details of how electricity physically works.

The environmental efficiency of our energy systems is more complex than CO2-emissions alone. Energy input, material input, lifetime, and recycling efficiency are other key elements discussed in the book. The book concludes with thoughts on the future of energy and suggestions for energy policy, taking into account the new challenges that come with global efforts to "decarbonize".

Prof. Bruce Everett, energy economist, Tufts University, writes:
  • "Despite numerous policy initiatives and the expenditure of trillions of dollars on alternatives, fossil fuels remain the dominant source of energy throughout the world, and their use continues to grow in absolute terms. To understand the reasons for this seeming contradiction, Lars and Bill have compiled a complete overview of how the global energy economy actually works, as opposed to the way it is presented in popular media.
  • In articulating important principles for electricity specifically and energy in general, Lars and Bill have scrupulously avoided taking partisan positions and are offering information that will be important and useful to everyone. This is an invaluable reference work that should be on the bookshelf of anyone interested in energy policy, electricity markets, and environmental protection."

Topics covered in this book include:
  • Primary energy vs. electricity
  • Wind and solar (or what is revered to as variable "renewable" energy)
  • Capacity factors
  • Installed capacity vs. generated electricity
  • Hydrogen and batteries
  • Material input
  • Transmission and distribution
  • Heat pumps
  • Energy shortages and energy starvation
  • Net energy returns (eROI)
  • Full Cost of Electricity (FCOE) vs. the marginal - most commonly used - Levelized Cost of Electricity (LCOE)
  • "Net-Zero", "decarbonization", and the "energy transition"
  • ... concluding with a realistic future of energy and sustainability

published by Energeia Publishing, Singapore (

NOTE: unfortunately, a few of the figures and graphs are not easily readable, we apologize. As a result, we have made all graphs available for free and downloadable at Thank you for your continued interest and feedback which we read and take seriously.
Product Details ISBN: 9798362596620
Publisher: Independently Published
Publication Date: November 8th, 2022
Pages: 154
Language: English