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A Thousand Years of Energy Use in the United Kingdom

Roger Fouquet and Peter J. G. Pearson

Year: 1998
Volume: Volume19
Number: Number 4
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol19-No4-1
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Abstract:
This paper examines the evolution of energy use and its influences in the United Kingdom over the very long run by combining economic literature and statistical information. The paper argues that the provision of energy services, mainly heat and power, is bound by the tensions between a changing growth rate and structure of economic activity and the constraints of energetic resources. After periods of tension, energy price differentials, as well as the diffusion of technological innovation and the development of new fuels, led to new mixes of energy sources to supply heat and power. This paper identifies three major changes that characterise the history of UK energy use: first, the dramatic increase in per capita energy use; second, the shift in methods of supplying energy services, from biomass sources to fossil fuels, from coal to petroleum to natural gas, and from raw forms to more value-added energy sources; and, third, the replacing of direct methods of generating power, from animate sources, wind and water, by the use of mechanical and electrical methods, which have so far depended mainly on fossil fuels. These changes were instrumental in influencing the relationship between GDP and energy use, and also the levels of environmentalpollution.



The Historical “Roots” of U.S. Energy Price Shocks

Hillard G. Huntington

Year: 2017
Volume: Volume 38
Number: Number 5
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5547/01956574.38.5.hhun
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Abstract:
Sustained energy price increases in the United States have preceded declines in economic activity as far back as 1890. This finding applies to two different historical GDP data sets. It suggests a much longer national experience with rising energy prices that began well before the period after World War Two. This problem emerged well before the U.S. transition towards petroleum products when coal was an important energy source. This relationship varies with the state of the economy and appears less evident during some periods, as in the years following the 1929 stock market crash.





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