Altering Course: Why the United States may be on the cusp of an energy revolution

May 8, 2015
water pumping windmill in Iowa

An active water pumping windmill in Iowa; photograph by Ben Franske. [Published under the Creative Commons Attribution.]

Of the nearly 100 quadrillion British thermal units of energy (BTUs) used each year in the United States, 61 quads are wasted. That is not a moral judgment, or a commentary on insufficient conservation (poor insulation, idling cars, people failing to turn off lights when they leave a room). It is, as Mara Prentiss notes, predominantly fundamental physics: the fuel is burned, but less than 50 percent performs useful work...

Read the article about Prof. Prentiss in the latest Harvard Magazine.