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Powering the Dream

Book Description

Few today realize that America’s relationship with green technology is far from a recent development. The truth is Americans have been inventing green for more than a century. Powering the Dream tells the fascinating stories of the brilliant, often irascible inventors who foresaw our current energy problems, tried to invent cheap and renewable solutions, and drew the blueprint for a green future.

Table of Contents

  1. Title Page
  2. Dedication
  3. Preface
  4. Acknowledgements
  5. Introduction
  6. I. - The Dream of a More Perfect Power
    1. chapter 1 - Profit, Salvation
    2. chapter 2 - The First Green-Technology Futurist
    3. chapter 3 - The Utopia Commercial
    4. chapter 4 - Prescribing for the Globe Itself
  7. II. - What Was
    1. chapter 5 - Steam-Powered America
    2. chapter 6 - The Wind and the West
      1. TAKING THE WINDINESS OUT OF THE WIND
      2. THE DIY WINDMILLS OF THE ARID WEST
    3. chapter 7 - The Parable of Petrolia
    4. chapter 8 - Wave Motors and Airplanes
      1. IF GOD INTENDED MAN TO FLY
    5. chapter 9 - Compressed Air and Electricity
  8. III. - What Might Have Been
    1. chapter 10 - The National Electric Transportation System That Almost Was
      1. A NEW COMBINATION
      2. BICYCLES AND ROADS, BARONS AND RAILS
    2. chapter 11 - Solar Hot Water, Day and Night
    3. chapter 12 - The Solar Home of the 1950s
      1. THE ALL-ELECTRIC DEVELOPMENT
    4. chapter 13 - The Solar Energy Research Institute
      1. THE LONE ENVIRONMENTALIST
      2. THE REAGANITES ARE COMING!
    5. chapter 14 - The Meaning of Luz
      1. “THE TECHNOLOGY THAT WILL SAVE HUMANITY”
      2. THE RIDICULOUS PROJECT
      3. A CRIME OF NEGLECT
    6. chapter 15 - How to Burn a Biological Library
  9. IV. - Lessons from the Great Energy Rethink
    1. chapter 16 - What Happens When an Energy System Breaks
    2. chapter 17 - Thermodynamics
      1. WHERE’S MY WEATHER CONTROL AGENCY?
      2. ART ROSENFELD AND THE INVASION OF THE PHYSICISTS
      3. REBOUND RELATIONSHIPS AND THE GLOBE
    3. chapter 18 - Transcendentalism
      1. PUTTING THE AXE TO THE ROOT OF SOCIETY’S EVIL
      2. “THE SUN RENEWS US, IN AN ALMOST RELIGIOUS WAY”
    4. chapter 19 - Tools
      1. THE SOLAR AGE
    5. chapter 20 - Technology
  10. V. - Innovation and the Future
    1. chapter 21 - Google’s RE < C Challenge
      1. RE < C
    2. chapter 22 - The First Megawatt and Failing Smart
      1. “MEAGER AND UNCERTAIN” DATA
      2. THE FREE ENTERPRISERS
      3. THE BLADE THAT FAILED AND THE PROJECT THAT DIDN’T
    3. chapter 23 - What Green Tech Can Learn from Nuclear Power’s Rise and Fall
      1. IF YOU BUY IT, IT’S CHEAP
      2. ESTABLISHING FUTURE FACTS
      3. LEARNABLE LESSONS
    4. chapter 24 - The Five-Cent Turbine and the Siren Call of the Breakthrough
      1. THE LAST GREAT AMERICAN TAX SHELTER OR THE INFANT GREEN-TECH INDUSTRY
      2. BUBBLE BURST
    5. chapter 25 - Energy Storage and the Return of Compressed Air
    6. chapter 26 - “Throw Software at the Problem”
      1. THE DREAMSCAPE OF INVENTORS
      2. SENSING THE ENVIRONMENT
    7. chapter 27 - Rehumanizing Environmentalism
      1. THINK GLOBALLY, DESTROY LOCALLY
  11. NOTES
  12. BIBLIOGRAPHY
  13. INDEX
  14. Copyright Page