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On the energy content of a money unit

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  • Beaudreau, Bernard C.
  • Pokrovskii, Vladimir N.
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    Abstract

    In this paper, the concept of “productive energy” as a substitute for conventional labour is examined historically, theoretically and empirically. Over the course of the last centuries, productive energy has been substituted for human, muscle- and brain-based work, providing the wherewithal for the phenomenal growth in material wealth in Western societies. In this era of rising energy costs and increasing energy scarcity, future growth appears to be compromised. To better understand the consequences for society, estimates of the energy content of a dollar’s worth of output are provided for the US and Russia.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0378437110001998
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications.

    Volume (Year): 389 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 13 ()
    Pages: 2597-2606

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:phsmap:v:389:y:2010:i:13:p:2597-2606

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    Web page: http://www.journals.elsevier.com/physica-a-statistical-mechpplications/

    Related research

    Keywords: Energy in production; Labour theory of value; Factor substitution; Production of value; Production factors; US economic growth;

    References

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    1. Berndt, Ernst R & Wood, David O, 1979. "Engineering and Econometric Interpretations of Energy-Capital Complementarity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(3), pages 342-54, June.
    2. Stanley, H.E & Amaral, L.A.N & Canning, D & Gopikrishnan, P & Lee, Y & Liu, Y, 1999. "Econophysics: Can physicists contribute to the science of economics?," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 269(1), pages 156-169.
    3. Beaudreau, Bernard C., 2005. "Engineering and economic growth," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 16(2), pages 211-220, June.
    4. Pokrovski, Vladimir N., 2003. "Energy in the theory of production," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 28(8), pages 769-788.
    5. Ayres, Robert U & Ayres, Leslie W & Warr, Benjamin, 2003. "Exergy, power and work in the US economy, 1900–1998," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 219-273.
    6. Robert J. Barro, 1995. "Inflation and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 5326, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Dale W. Jorgenson & Kevin J. Stiroh, 2000. "Raising the Speed Limit: U.S. Economic Growth in the Information Age," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 31(1), pages 125-236.
    8. Robert Fogel & Dora Costa, 1997. "A theory of technophysio evolution, with some implications for forecasting population, health care costs, and pension costs," Demography, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 49-66, February.
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    Cited by:
    1. Lindenberger, Dietmar & Kuemmel, Rainer, 2011. "Energy and the State of Nations," EWI Working Papers 2011-11, Energiewirtschaftliches Institut an der Universitaet zu Koeln.
    2. Pokrovskii, Vladimir N., 2011. "Pulsation of the growth rate of output and technology," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 390(23), pages 4347-4354.

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