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Energy Basics is sponsored by the Yale Energy History Project, an initiative to deepen understanding of the histories and cultures of energy, across geographic regions and temporal scales, with lessons to guide future energy transitions. 


Through curated online teaching units and a growing library of historical primary source materials, the Energy History Project seeks to promote energy literacy among students, practitioners, and the interested public. Energy Basics can be used as a companion site alongside these Energy History Online teaching units.


United States and world energy systems are in a period of tremendous flux, driven by technological advances, cultural and social pressures, and government policies to respond to the threat of climate change. Studying the history of energy illuminates this current moment, helping to identify what questions to ask, to see what trends and patterns might repeat themselves, and to understand what is truly new and unprecedented.  

Energy Basics is designed to complement humanities and social scientific approaches to energy with a basic understanding of how energy systems work.

The Yale Energy History Project is led by Prof. Paul Sabin, Randolph W. Townsend, Jr. Professor of History and Environmental Studies. 

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