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Introduction to Special Issue on New Studies in EROI (Energy Return on Investment)

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  • Charles A.S. Hall

    () (Departments of Environmental and Forest Biology and Environmental Studies, and Graduate Program in Environmental Science, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, State University of New York Syracuse, New York, NY 13210, USA)

Abstract

Energy Return on Investment (EROI) refers to how much energy is returned from one unit of energy invested in an energy-producing activity. It is a critical parameter for understanding and ranking different fuels. There were a number of studies on EROI three decades ago but relatively little work since. Now there is a whole new interest in EROI as fuels get increasingly expensive and as we attempt to weigh alternative energies against traditional ones. This special volume brings together a whole series of high quality new studies on EROI, as well as many papers that struggle with the meaning of changing EROI and its impact on our economy. One overall conclusion is that the quality of fuels is at least as important in our assessment as is the quantity. I argue that many of the contemporary changes in our economy are related directly to changing EROI as our premium fuels are increasingly depleted.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles A.S. Hall, 2011. "Introduction to Special Issue on New Studies in EROI (Energy Return on Investment)," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(10), pages 1-5, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:3:y:2011:i:10:p:1773-1777:d:14241
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Charles A. S. Hall & Stephen Balogh & David J.R. Murphy, 2009. "What is the Minimum EROI that a Sustainable Society Must Have?," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 2(1), pages 1-23, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Virginia Di Nino & Ivan Faiella, 2013. "The �new� non-conventional hydrocarbons: the solution to the energy conundrum?," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 205, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    energy; EROI; economic; fuels; quality of fuels;

    JEL classification:

    • Q - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics
    • Q0 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q3 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

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