Environmental Protection and Services

Electricity is one of the safest form of energy on earth except when there are power surges that may lead to property loss in the absence of overvoltage protection. However, its generation may have different adverse effects on the environment irrespective of whether it is generated from fossil fuels, in a nuclear plant or even a hydro plant. Power production from solar and wind, that are considered environmental friendly also have negative impact although the level of pollution may be lower than those of the traditional methods. This has raised different environmental concerns that need to be addressed. What can electricity generation plants do to protect the environment?

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Air pollution 

The use of fossil fuels in power generation lead to the production of air pollutants as a waste product. Carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and hydro carbons produced during the generation processes lead to air pollution. Whenever it rains in some of these production regions, the rain water mixes up with these gases and it ultimately leads to acid rain. Air pollution should be rectified through the treatment of all waste gases in such a case that they are harmless when released into the environment.

Water pollution

Electricity generating plants utilise a lot of water in cooling their equipment. Ultimately, this water is released into the environment and it might contain heat and dissolved substances that could harm marine life. When this water is released into rivers and water sources for domestic use, human life is also affected negatively. The solution is to ensure that the water has been cooled, treated and all dissolved gases and substances removed before it is released into the environment.

Solid and radioactive waste

This is particularly popular from plants that utilise fossil fuels in electricity production. Radioactive waste has the potential to eliminate all forms of life if ingested or inhaled over a long period of time. When possible, solid waste can be converted into usable states such as into manure or fuels. When not possible, it should be treated for any harmful substance before it is safely disposed in designated areas. Special care must be taken when disposing off radioactive matter and the established rules and regulations must be abided to. Improper disposal of radioactive matter may attract legal suits against the electricity generating plant.

The solar and wind generation processes

These have minimal effects on the environment. The solar panels usually use an operating fluid that can be discharged from time to time. In addition to this, large tracts of land are required for the installation of the solar panels which may also lead to overheating of the surrounding areas. Plants that utilise wind to generate electricity have a lot of noise pollution. These can be located away from habited areas in order to prevent their effect on human life.