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Issue 2, 2012
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Practical limitations and recognizing hype

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Abstract

Large swaths of the public lack a basic understanding of energy issues. This fact, coupled with a desire for a miracle that will mitigate energy and environmental concerns, makes clean energy an area ripe for hype. Many technologies are described that are possible, yet will never be practical. As scientists and engineers we must do better job explaining the difference. Practical limitations were ignored as the development of cellulosic ethanol rode a wave of optimism and hype earlier in this decade. It is now clear that cellulosic ethanol is not delivering on the promises made. Scientists and engineers will continue to show us what is possible. We must focus our efforts in energy on those technologies that can also be practical.

Graphical abstract: Practical limitations and recognizing hype

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Article information


Submitted
11 Nov 2011
Accepted
15 Dec 2011
First published
15 Dec 2011

Energy Environ. Sci., 2012,5, 5478-5480
Article type
Opinion

Practical limitations and recognizing hype

W. F. Banholzer, Energy Environ. Sci., 2012, 5, 5478
DOI: 10.1039/C2EE03146A

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