The first and second laws of thermodynamics: work uses energy and systems are inefficient. A good example with Google search in New Scientist. However, as if often the case when talking about thermodynamics and economics, there is no accounting for the fact that society, unlike the real world, can create something out of nothing.
Things like economies of scale and network effects have confounded people from Smith to Malthus to Marx. In this case, there is a need to compare the cost (lightbulb for one hour) against any possible benefit.