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The Advantages, Disadvantages and Environmental Impacts of Renewable Energy Sources

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Introduction

The Advantages, Disadvantages and Environmental Impacts of Renewable Energy Sources Energy Type Advantages Disadvantages Environmental Impacts Geothermal * Uses energy generated within the Earth's core. * The heat can be used to heat houses or as steam to turn turbines and create electricity. * There are 2 ways of getting this type of power. * There are several places in the U.K. where the hot aquifer scheme could be used. * It requires the input of water going into the aquifer from above. * It requires a borehole for the extraction of hot water or steam. * Large negative visual impact. * High noise pollution. * Could cause seismic activity from explosions created to fracture aquifer to a greater extent. ...read more.

Middle

> Flooding destroys habitats and Ecosystems also during dam construction. > High temps allow Microorganisms to grow which Increases the O2 demand causing existing wildlife to be starved of O2. > Dams can prevent fish migration patterns upstream to spawn. > Decaying plants at the bottom of the reservoir sub merged by flooding release green house gases. > Large Dams can cause localized microclimates. Soils downstream don't get nutrients because fertile silt is deposited upstream. Solar energy 3 types: Passive (heating of buildings by sunlight-saves electricity), Photo-voltaic (generating electricity from light) Photo-thermal (heating water from sunlight-saving electricity) ==> Passive ==> Clean energy from insolation ==> Reduces electricity consumption ==> Photo-voltaic ==> No emissions ==> No noise pollution ==> Silica, the substance used to produce photovoltaic cells, is highly abundant in Earth's crust. ...read more.

Conclusion

4) Unsafe in strong winds, as the propellers can break. Also flying ice can be a problem 5) Only efficient in certain areas 1) Can cause an obstruction to birds Biofuel and Biomass Biofuel is the use of methanol and ethanol which can be produced from crops containing sugar (e.g. sugarcane and maize) Biomass is the production of energy from burning crops (e.g. wood) and natural waste products (e.g. sawdust) Biofuel: 1) Ethanol produces less emissions than petrol when burnt (doesn't produce sulpher or nitrogen) Biomass: 2) Provides energy and solves waste disposal problems 1) Ethanol doesn't produce as much energy as petrol 1) Distillation (used to produce ethanol) creates large volumes of toxic waste known as swill. This would kill fish, plants and algae if it were to leak into the waterways. 2) The burning of biomass and biofuels produces CO2 emissions ...read more.

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