From IEEE Spectrum:
The fact that energy sources and uses are stated in so many different kinds of terms is increasingly seen as not merely an annoyance but as a serious impediment to public understanding of critical choices. In an effort to get matters onto a more intuitive, citizen-friendly basis, a number of experts have hit on the convenient fact that the world at present consumes about 1 cubic mile of oil (CMO) per year. Among these experts are Ed Kinderman and Hewitt Crane at SRI International, in Menlo Park, Calif., who are preparing a book for Oxford University Press that will be built around the idea of normalizing all energy units to 1 CMO (4.17 cubic kilometers).And here's what they came up with:
One dramatic way of portraying their results is to ask how many alternative energy sources—say coal-fired plants or solar panels— it would take to produce the equivalent of one CMO.
Thanks to Colby Cosh for the pointer.
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