How Long Does It Take to Develop and Build Up a New Technology?

  • Linda Baine McGown
  • John O’M. Bockris


The following two points summarize those discussed so far in this book:
  1. 1.

    The energy supply is as important to a technological people, an affluent people, as the air supply to biological man. Seriously decreasing the consumption per person would cause economic depression, then disorganization, and, if the decrease were sufficient, disaster. A significant decline in the standard of living (rise in unemployment, increase in inflation, decrease in real income), compared with that of 1973, was already visible in the second half of the 1970s in several Western world countries. One of its causes was the increase in the price of energy which was occurring because of the exhaustion phase entered by the world oil resources.

  2. 2.

    We are running out of the sources of energy which we now use, and these will be exhausted within two to three decades. After that, we could burn all our coal (despite pollution, increased mining difficulties, and costs, etc.) which would extend the lifetime of the affluent and expanding economies a few decades more.



Research Stage Hydrogen Fuel Cell Commercialization Stage Renewable Energy Alternative Affluent People 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda Baine McGown
    • 1
  • John O’M. Bockris
    • 2
  1. 1.California State UniversityLong BeachUSA
  2. 2.Texas A & MCollege StationUSA

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