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Power Shift: From Fossil Energy to Dynamic Solar Power

4.59  ·  Rating details ·  34 ratings  ·  24 reviews
You are part of the grand transition that is underway in energy, but you are probably wondering what it all means for you. Human society has committed to getting off fossil fuels because they are warming our planet, and this shift will engage everyone. Why? Because everyone uses energy. Today you have choices in energy that you never had before, and your choices will affec ...more
Paperback, 346 pages
Published April 22nd 2015 by Sandstone Publishing (first published April 12th 2015)
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a  Lena
Nov 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wow. This book is awesome. Seriously. It tells us how to build solar-powered future, but in understandable, reader-friendly manner. It will educate and inspire you. Robert Stayton has a masters degree in physics, and he has been living with solar energy since 1997. This book is about energy from prehistoric times to today, and with plans for the future. Fossil fuels are causing so much damage to the planet. Use the sky! Go Solar!
N.N. Light
Aug 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Rarely have I read a book that was written by an author so driven by belief in his message. If Solar Power advocacy ever needs a picture to define it then it is Robert Arther Stayton. Stayton goes to great lengths to explain what the current state of the world’s energy production is, how it causes difficulties, what can be done to fix it and in the end how Solar Power is the only way to make it right.

As strong a message as it is, it is lost a bit in the lengthy prose that details the current sta
Brian Clegg
Aug 23, 2015 rated it liked it
Reviewing this book is frustrating because it does a really important job - but doesn't do it in a particularly effective fashion.

Let's get into that important job first. The book is about the need to move to solar energy, driven by the impact of manmade climate change. The most impressive thing about Power Shift is that it persuaded me that we should produce significantly more of our energy from solar. I've got some problems with Robert Stayton's assertion that all our energy could come from so
Trang Tran (Bookidote)
Oct 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
I would recommend this book to every consumer, because the information collected and vulgarized in this book are a great source of knowledge. You don’t even have to agree or disagree with the use and solutions from Solar Power. Simply read it for general culture and then reflect on our Earth’s future.

This book introduces us to a key word, energy, and how this same word makes us different from other animals. It’s such a great way to look at it because we usually talk in a scale of brain differenc
Ryano Staytonius
May 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
You need to read this book. It's smart and thoughtful, but more importantly it's useful in your everyday life today and essential for how we can sensibly change our wasteful, destructive lifestyles into making more sensible decisions that will steer us clear of a potentially disastrous future. Our continued reliance on today's energy sources is literally unsustainable.

Don't let the seemingly science-heavy tech talk scare you away from this all-too-important discussion. Stayton's science know-how
Mar 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'll rate this book 4/5 not in spite of but due to the author's clear-cut way of exposing the former utility and current disadvantages of using fossil fuels, in contrast with the multiple benefits that arise from shifting to solar power. The outline and development of the thesis statement are easy to follow and I am pretty sure the book will manage to rise awareness within each and every regular layperson it is aimed at.
As for those readers in search of something more technical and complex, the
Susan Walker
Jun 10, 2015 rated it liked it
Heavy duty book on the subject of energy. This is not a light read but very detailed and researched.
Biswanath Banerjee
Nov 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: popular-science
Wheels of progress of human civilization have been moving too fast I for the last two centuries or so. Scientific inventions are added up to the existing knowledge every day like downpour in a black clouded day. In science and technology- species Homo sapiens is making remarkable strides to expand the sphere of human knowledge to its zenith. Newer inventions are making lives easier for them.
But every convenience comes at a price. To achieve the peak of human convenience mother earth has to make
Dennis Littrell
Apr 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
So readable and thorough that even a congressperson can understand the urgency

This is one of those books that is so valuable that if it were read by enough people soon enough it could save the lives of hundreds of millions of people or even billions.

Sound like an exaggeration? Consider what is at stake if we continue to rely on fossil fuels for energy. It’s not just the people who will lose their homes because of the rising ocean tide, nor is it the people who live on land that will become unbea
Georgia hillstrom
Jun 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: done
I absolutely think this is the best book I have read so far on anything to do with solar energy. I received this book through the goodreads giveaway. Am happy to have the information in this book. I plan o pass to several people. I feel we all need to do better at how we use energy. We are not powerless to do something about energy uses and wasteful energy habits. A percent of the world population will do noting or cannot do anything in this area. Those who control political and economic power m ...more
Jan 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
At the beginning of the book, Stayton starts off with explaining about the beginnings and history of energy. He explains how we got where we are now, and includes beautifully drawn pictures. He also explains how we became such big users of energy. I was surprised to find out that everything we do involves energy from some source. As an example in the book, it takes energy to cut grass, and then transport it to wherever it needs to go. Afterwards, Stayton talks about the problem that we are havin ...more
Aurelia McNeil
Aug 27, 2015 rated it liked it
The book, Power Shift - From Fossil Energy to Dynamic Solar Power, gives an overview of how humans first began to direct energy. Stayton explains the earliest forms of harnessing energy i.e. using wood for heating and cooking and using animal energy for power.

'Our current dilemma', he explains, 'is the 100 million tons of carbon dioxide released into our atmosphere each day.' Subsequently, Stayton outlines why only 20-40% of global fossil fuel carbon emissions is suitable for capture, why carbon
Jun 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: educators and people who want tochange.
Shelves: owned-books
I first want to thank goodreads first reads and the author for giving me the opportunity to receive a free copy of Power Shift by Robert Authur Stayton.
I found this book to be very informative and how history has given the need in the modern times the solar energy instead of the fossil fuels we have been accustom to and how using pv solar panels can give us the same effects for the most part and what happens to our lives if we dont change.How carbon dioxide is affecting us in the long term and w
Ron Record
Jul 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
"Power Shift" really should be required reading for all. This book clearly and concisely explains the evolution of mankind's use of energy and the role of energy in our rise as dominant species of planet Earth.

Anyone involved in the climate debate or the impact of fossil fuel use on the climate should read this book. Our educators should read this book. In fact, I would recommend everybody read this book.

Don't think that because Stayton provides a clear and concise explanation of the science and
Karel Baloun
Dec 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Energy basic principles and engineering fundamentals explained in the most understandable, accurate and engaging way I have ever read. Great intro student textbook or primer for kids.

Shines when advocating for Solar, while covering a tremendous range of issues and arguments. The battery and PV technology sections are already dated, and more experimental tech should have been reviewed. The speed of innovation and experimentation is the strongest secure indicator of inevitable success.

"It is impor
Brenda Hoffman
May 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I received this as an goodreads giveaway. What I wanted was to find out out where solar power is. From the 70's to today, getting energy for electricity has changed. We had solar panels but had to take them off when they stopped working. About this book, he explains first the history of energy and about where we were. He details his personal experience as a home owner and how it actually which is what those interested in solar power. He then explains further details about solar power in the rest ...more
Jun 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

This book was amazing! I really enjoyed it. It got very technical though, but Robert really did a fantastic job of breaking it down into truly understandable terms. The things that were said in this book really had me thinking and agreeing with a lot of stuff. I consider myself a soft "green" person but this book really lit a fire under me to work harder. I love the ending where he gives you varying levels of participation. Know what is
May 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
If you have any questions or doubts about solar power, read this book! It is the most logical explanation about and argument for the switch to solar power. After reading this book it is undeniable that this is the path humans all over the world should take. Stayton describes his own personal experience with solar power, which really normalizes it and shows how easy it can it be. In his acknowledgments, Stayton mentions how he always wished to "write a book that made a complex subject easy for an ...more
I was already sold on the idea of solar power: I recently had a solar system installed at my house and drive and electric car. But there was much that I didn't know. Power Shift helped me understand how important the move to solar power is and the limitations of all the alternatives you hear about. The book is clear, concise, and informative. Read it and buy copies for all your friends.
May 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Have doubts about whether climate change is really happening? This is the book to read. Written in very readable, non-scientific terms, it makes a compelling case for getting away from fossil fuels and switching to solar power. A must read for anyone interested in the subject -- as well as everyone else who should be interested in the subject.
Susan Csoke
Jun 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a Fabulous Book. Very Informative as well as Educational. Robert Stayton has written for us to understand the Hazards of Continuing the Usage of Fossil Fuels for energy. And he fully explains the Benefits of Solar Energy. An Excellent Learning Experience. THANK YOU GOODREADS FIRSTREADS FOR THIS FREE BOOK!!!!!
Rachel Parrott
Jun 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
In “Power Shift” Stayton offers a much needed look at humanity's relationship with energy: where we have been, where we are, and where we would could go (in a good way). He offers the science in a language that anyone can follow and offers insights and ways forward with solar that will be engaging to all from novice to expert.

My copy was a gift though Goodreads First Reads.
Aan Krida
Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A fantastic book! I love this book because it give a new knowledge about energy sources of the future (future technology - alternative energy). Thank you Mr. Robert Arthur Stayton for the great book.
Jun 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I received this book through Goodreads Firstreads. Very interesting and intelligent book on solar energy. Seems long at times, but I would recommend to all!
Julia Ladner
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Dec 31, 2016
Barbara Stayton
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Goodreads Authors...: Nautilus Book Award winner 2 11 May 11, 2016 05:13AM  
Goodreads Authors...: Book of the Year Finalist available for review 1 14 Mar 09, 2016 12:34PM  
Robert Stayton is a writer who lives in Santa Cruz County, California. He has a masters degree in physics, and has taught college courses in physics, energy, and solar energy. He also has a Graduate Certificate in Science Communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

In 1997, Robert and his wife built a passive solar home in Santa Cruz County and outfitted it with an off-grid solar p

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