Maximum Power: The Ideas and Applications of H. T. Odum

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Maximum Power is a synthesis of the creative genius of Howard Thomas Odum as seen through his own words and those of his students, many of whom are now applying his ideas to the world in diverse ways. Offering the holistic, system-oriented thinking of Odum, this in-depth volume examines the interrelationship of humans and nature by integrating environment, energy, and economics.

Maximum Power traces the development of Odum's ideas with the objective of providing the conceptual and research history that has led to Odum's far-reaching ideas about making social decisions. The volume is organized along the chronological path that Odum himself followed, from ecology to ecological engineering to ecological economics to his controversial synthesis called "emergy analysis." The writings of fifty scientists from a wide range of disciplines are grouped into five sections: The Contributions of H.T. Odum to Subdisciplines of Ecology, Environmental Management and Engineering, H.T. Odum and Economics, Education, and Personal Memoirs.

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Editorial Reviews

Emerging from a September 1989 symposium honoring his teaching and scientific achievements, this volume traces the development of the innovative interdisciplinary thought of ecological scientist H.T. Odum, providing the conceptual and research history that has led to Odum's far-reaching ideas about making social decisions. The volume is organized along the chronological path that Odum himself followed, from ecology to ecological engineering to ecological economics to his grand synthesis called "emergy analysis." Each of the six thematic sections (the seventh comprises personal memoirs) is introduced by editor Hall, who also provides a general introduction. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780870813627
  • Publisher: University Press of Colorado
  • Publication date: 10/28/1995
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 393
  • Product dimensions: 8.77 (w) x 11.29 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles A.S. Hall is a professor in the College of Environment and Forestry at State University of New York at Syracuse.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: What is Maximum Power?
Introduction: The Contributions of H. T. Odum to Ecology
1 A Review of Dr. Howard T. Odum's Early Publications: From Bird Migration Studies to Scott Nixon's Turtle Grass Model 3
2 Contributions of H. T. Odum to Ecosystem Simulation Modeling 11
3 H. T. Odum and Marine Ecology 19
4 Contributions of H. T. Odum to Tropical Ecology 23
5 The Helicopter Drop Net Revisited, or Why Navy Helicopter Pilots Have Gray Hair 25
6 Ecosystem Modeling and Energy Analysis of Submerged Aquatic Vegetation in Chesapeake Bay 28
7 Properties of Mangrove Ecosystems Related to the Energy Signature of Coastal Environments 43
8 Production and Respiration Patterns in Long Island Sound: Riley's Weaker Signals Amplified? 63
9 The Distribution and Abundance of Organisms as a Consequence of Energy Balances Along Multiple Environmental Gradients 72
10 Hierarchical Control of Coral Reef Ecological Structure and Processes 87
11 Modeling Water Temples and Rice Irrigation in Bali: A Lesson in Socio-Ecological Communication 100
12 Ecological Engineering: From Gainesville to Beijing - A Comparison of Approaches in the United States and China 109
13 Wetland Systems for Wastewater Management: Implementation 123
14 The Efficacy of Fisheries Management Strategies: A Case Study of the Gulf of Maine Redfish Fishery 132
15 Consequences of Sea Level Rise: Implications From the Mississippi Delta 149
16 What Is Ecological Economics? 161
17 Systems Ecology and Sustainable Development: Links on Two Levels 164
18 Distributed Costs of Environmental Contamination 175
19 Energy, Economics, and Environment (E3) Revisited 183
20 The Valuation and Management of Wetland Ecosystems 191
21 Struggling With an Emergy Analysis: Shrimp Mariculture in Ecuador 207
22 Rediscovery of the World: Developing an Interface of Ecology and Economics 216
23 Emergism: A Policy for a Scientific Party 251
24 Environs, Emergy, Transformity, and Energy Value 255
25 Case Study of the Role of the Environment in Geneva Vineyard Cultivation and Wine Production, 1972-1986 279
26 Ecological Economics of Alternative Transportation Fuels 284
27 Transportation Improvements, Growth Management, and Regional Patterns of Energy Distribution 302
28 Self-Organization and Maximum Empower 311
29 Teaching About Ecological Systems: The HTO Influence 332
30 Information Processing Models in Ecology and Education 337
31 Using Simulation to Introduce the Systems Approach in Education 346
32 H. T. Odum as Colleague 353
33 Thoughts on Being a Student of H. T. Odum 356
34 Reminiscences of H. T. Odum with a Focus on His Educational Techniques 359
35 H. T. Odum as Husband and Colleague 360
36 The Influence of H. T. Odum's Ideas in Sweden 362
37 Energy Systems and the Unification of Science 365
Contributors 373
Index 375
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