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Remembering a Biased Energy Encyclopedia (2004 Review of the “Hummer” 6 Volume Set)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- June 5, 2010

[Editor note: Some analyses are worth revisiting, including this book review in the  Energy Journal of Cutler Cleveland, ed., Encyclopedia of Energy (6 volumes, Elsevier). Bradley shared his review with Professor Cleveland, who stated his surprise that it passed peer review. The reader can the judge the quality of the review in six years’ hindsight.]

This is the Hummer of energy books. The Elsevier Encyclopedia of Energy is almost twice as large as two predecessor energy encyclopedias combined. The price tag is commensurate. This set is only for the wealthy, the addicted, large libraries, and paid-in-kind reviewers.

Encyclopedia editor Cutler Cleveland, an ecological economist, introduces the compilation (p. xxxi) as “the first comprehensive, organized body of [energy] knowledge for what is certain to continue as a major area of scientific study in the 21st century.”…