Staff Publications

Staff Publications

  • external user (warningwarning)
  • Log in as
  • language uk
  • About

    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

    We have a manual that explains all the features 

Record number 512356
Title Philosophical explorations on energy transition
Author(s) Geerts, Robert-Jan
Source University. Promotor(en): Bart Gremmen; Guido Ruivenkamp, co-promotor(en): Josette Jacobs. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463430487 - 172
Department(s) Philosophy
WASS
Rural Sociology
Publication type Dissertation, internally prepared
Publication year 2017
Keyword(s) philosophy - technology - sustainable energy - renewable energy - social change - energy consumption - quality - society - energy - filosofie - technologie - duurzame energie - hernieuwbare energie - sociale verandering - energiegebruik - kwaliteit - samenleving - energie
Categories Philosophy (General)
Abstract

This dissertation explores energy transition from a philosophical perspective. It puts forward the thesis that energy production and consumption are so intimately intertwined with society that the transition towards a sustainable alternative will involve more than simply implementing novel technologies. Fossil energy sources and a growth-based economy have resulted in very specific energy practices, which will change in the future. Broader reflection is needed to understand how and in which direction such change is acceptable and desirable.

This reflection is initiated by articulating two pertinent problems with current energy practices that have thus far failed to receive appropriate attention in debates on energy transition: 1) the difficulty of dealing with intermittent sources in relation to the idea of cumulative accounting of energy consumption, and 2) the mismatch between expectations of ethical consumer behaviour in energy systems that discourage engagement.

To move forward, instead of assuming that all consumption is equivalent and that more is better, we must develop a better informed and more nuanced idea of 'good' energy practices that actually contribute to our quality of life. One often overlooked aspect of this may be 'embodied engagement', which would suggest that automation of tasks through energy-consuming technologies may be convenient, but also tends to lead to a loss of appreciation for both the task and its result. Some things, like creating a cozy environment around a fireplace, or climbing a mountain, are better partly because they take effort. In such cases, the 'efficiency' of the technology (e.g. the heat-pump, or the automobile) is besides the point - the question is whether it gives us anything of value at all.

Comments
There are no comments yet. You can post the first one!
Post a comment
 
Please log in to use this service. Login as Wageningen University & Research user or guest user in upper right hand corner of this page.