Special report: Energy

The reading list...

For understanding the new energy landscape

The Quest: Energy, Security, and the Remaking of the Modern World

by Daniel Yergin


A simultaneously gripping and authoritative account of how the global energy market has been reshaped in recent years. In addition to providing the definitive history of the oil industry, Yergin presents nuanced and balanced assessments of the potential of wind, solar, and other renewables, and makes a strong case for the promise of energy efficiency.

Energy Myths and Realities: Bringing Science to the Energy Policy Debate

by Vaclav Smil


Bill Gates has said that “there is no author whose books I look forward to more than Vaclav Smil.” A distinguished professor emeritus at the University of Manitoba, Smil turns his penetrating insight to debunking common misconceptions about the future of energy, including the exaggerated promise of carbon sequestration and the dubious future of electric cars.

The End of Country: Dispatches from the Frack Zone

by Seamus McGraw


McGraw takes us to ground zero for fracking—northeast Pennsylvania, home of the Marcellus Shale, a natural gas deposit worth $1 trillion. A highly personal story of the modern U.S. gas rush, The End of Country offers what many energy books do not: unforgettable characters, many of them local farmers who want to get a cut of the land’s riches while preserving their way of life.

The Power Surge: Energy, Opportunity, and the Battle for America’s Future

by Michael Levi


A detailed, clear-eyed look at the radical transformations taking place in America’s energy landscape, The Power Surge shifts from fracking to the Keystone XL pipeline to the future of renewables with thoughtful analysis and vivid storytelling. Levi argues that we must escape an either/or, ideology-driven mind-set on fossil fuels vs. renewables, and make pragmatic, clear-eyed choices.

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