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Renewable or sustainable energy

Getting started with library research | Overview of renewable or sustainable energy | Recommended engineering databases | Recommended environmental databases | Government resources | Statistical resources

Definition and scope

This guide provides a starting point to locate resources used to search the topic sustainable or renewable energy. Alternative energy is a slightly different topic, and although there is some cross-over in regards to renewable/sustainable energy, alternative energy is not specifically covered in this guide. For energy resources in general, see the Chemistry, Physics, or one of the engineering guides like Electrical Engineering or Nuclear Engineering.

This guide follows the definition of renewable/sustainable energy as defined by The Encyclopedia of the Earth: "… energy sources are those that are naturally available and replenished. Renewable energy sources include solar, wind, hydro (water), geothermal, Tidal power or ocean wave energy, and biomass."

Background sources

These each cover all types of energy resources, but each also includes several sections on renewable/sustainable energy forms.

Encyclopedia of Energy Technology and the Environment
Four-volume set examines the impact of energy production technologies on the environment. In 235 articles, the A-to-Z work covers such topics as acid rain, air pollution, aircraft fuel, building systems coal combustion, computer applications for energy efficient systems, risk assessment, solar heating, waste management planning, water power, and more.
Macmillan Encyclopedia of Energy
Provides a snapshot of the history and science of energy production, conservation, and use. Multidisciplinary in scope, the 253 signed and lavishly illustrated articles cover topics ranging from biofuels and bicycles to steam engines and thermodynamics. The work ends with a fascinating energy time line that puts major events in the history of energy into context.
The Encyclopedia of Earth
This is a free, fully searchable collection of articles written by scholars, professionals, educators, and experts who collaborate and review materials about the Earth and its natural environments.
Encyclopedia of Energy Engineering and Technology
Encompassing a wide spectrum of theoretical and applied concepts, methodologies, and possible solutions, the Encyclopedia of Energy Engineering and Technology, Three-Volume Set covers energy efficiency and conservation opportunities, renewable and alternative energy sources, the financial analysis of energy systems, performance contracting, environmental regulations, global climate change, green development, hydrogen-fueled vehicles, and much more. Sponsored by the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE), the comprehensive and timely material in this dynamic resource provides precise information that can make a difference in today's quest for energy efficiency. Use the Read Online link, then the chapter of interest from the table of contents.

  •     Kiri Goldbeck DeBose
  • Kyrille K Goldbeck DeBose
  • College Librarian for Natural Resources and Environment
  • (540) 231-0495
  • (540) 231-0419 (Cheatham Hall office)
  • kdebose@vt.edu
  • 310 West Campus Drive, Cheatham Hall Room 315B
    560 Drillfield Drive, Newman Library Room 4005
    Blacksburg, VA 24061

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