Renewable Energy Facts and Fantasies by Craig Shields - Book review

Renewable Energy Facts and Fantasies

The Tough Realities as Revealed in Interviews with 25 Subject Matter Experts

Craig Shields

Published: July 30, 2010
Format: Paperback, 322 pages
ISBN-10: 0615388353
ISBN-13: 978-0615388359
Publisher: Clean Energy Press

"Don't expect a surprise ending; there is none. We actually do live in a world of tough realities. No one can snap his fingers and turn on a safe, readily available, and cost-effective stream of renewable energy", writes marketing consultant and editor of 2GreenEnergy,com, Craig Shields, in his realistic and thought provoking book Renewable Energy Facts and Fantasies: The Tough Realities as Revealed in Interviews with 25 Subject Matter Experts. The author shares his twenty-five interviews with a very wide spectrum of experts and thought leaders on every aspect of the potential and challenges of sustainable energy sources.

Craig Shields recognizes that there are no quick fixes or easy answers to the very difficult realities and choices facing everyone regarding renewable energy. The author provides conversations with specialists, in an impressive variety of fields, who approach the concept of sustainable energy from very different directions and starting points. Craig Shields places the interviews within the context of the three most important, and often very contradictory areas of technology, economics, and politics. As a result, the experts don't always agree with one another, or even agree with the book's author. The result is a lively and often controversial book filled with often difficult ideas, challenges, and possibilities for the future.

Craig Shields (photo left) understands that the development of clean and renewable energy souls is a complex, and multi-layered issue. For the author, the best method of approaching the many sides and nuances of sustainable energy is to consider the realities of the controversial ideas and forces involved in the search. Understanding the technology alone is not sufficient to address the energy challenge. The societal challenges of politics and the often often harsh world of economics must also receive consideration. Without taking all three overarching areas into account, neither the obstacles or the benefits of renewable energy will achieve the best results for the planet. Craig Shields points out that when all three considerations are not in harmony, the result will be solutions that fail in both the near and longer terms.

For me, the power of the book is how Craig Shields addresses the reality of renewable energy with the goal of finding real solutions, through a multi-disciplinary approach. The author believes that hearing as many different voices as possible, including ideas that disagree with his own, will create a more open discussion. Craig Shields provides a collection of interviews that offer real world considerations of sustainable energy, and avoids the pitfall of suggesting a quick and easy solution.

For the author and his contributors, there are no quick fixes or magic bullets. Instead, they provide a realistic and thoughtful discussion of the most daunting challenges facing renewable energy, and how they affect and are affected by the the ever present and critical areas of technology, economics, and politics. The result of Craig Sheilds' wide ranging and very balanced interviews is a deeper and richer understanding of a complex but crucial subject.

I highly recommend the important and often unsettling book Renewable Energy Facts and Fantasies: The Tough Realities as Revealed in Interviews with 25 Subject Matter Experts by Craig Shields, to anyone seeking a comprehensive and real world based anthology of discussions on sustainable energy sources, and their technological, economic, and political ramifications. This book will introduce the reader to new ideas, including concepts that may disconcert some readers. The book's open and honest expert interviews make this book a must read for anyone in business, politics, technology, or the general public with an interest in the critical issues surrounding renewable energy.

Tags: , , , .