O'Reilly logo

Handbook of Energy by Christopher G. Morris, Cutler J. Cleveland

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Section 2

Biomass

Other than the direct use of solar energy, biomass has the longest history of human use. Biomass is the source of the first major energy transition in human history: the controlled use of fire. Various scholars have proposed dates ranging from 1.5 million to 150,000 years ago; the large range is due to debate over the archaeological and paleontological evidence, and in particular the problem of distinguishing natural fire events (as from lightning) from human-produced fire. Fire was transformative not only due its ability to cook food and provide warmth, but because it enabled humans to smelt metals and make ceramics.

The use of biomass has also contributed to one of history’s recurrent environmental problems: land degradation ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required