Energy Resources & Environmental Impacts

What are Energy Resources?

Energy is required for the evolution of life forms on earth. Energy is obtained from different sources. Everything that we use today – clothes, cooking gas, furniture, food, notebooks, vehicles, house, fuel, roads, toys, utensils etc. are obtained from resources on the earth.

The natural resources are the prime source of energy for everyday activities of humans, without which the world would still be the Stone Age. However, the usage of the resources also affects our surroundings and lead to several environmental impacts. We will discuss the environmental impacts of using our resources.

What are the Environmental Impacts?

Some of the major Environmental Issues are as follows:

  • The non-renewable resources such as the coal and petroleum cause more harm to the environment when compared to the renewable resources, in the form of air and water pollution, generation of toxic wastes, etc.
  • Coal gives out sulfur as emissions which harm the trees. Moreover, their extraction plants contaminate rivers and lakes and affect the aquatic ecosystem adversely.
  • Oil production and usage result in the release of the poisonous carbon oxides into the air.
  • Even the renewable resources are not completely eco-friendly. Generation of energy from the wind, the sun, tides, etc. also creates harmful environmental impacts and affect the biodiversity to a significant level.
  • The exhausts from natural gas release oxides of nitrogen and even methane which affect people and animals that use water from the affected water bodies.
  • Biomass also results in the generation of harmful gases. Ash created on burning the biomass is another unwanted waste which causes disposal issues due to its lead and cadmium content.
  • Manufacturing of the photovoltaic cells (PVC) produce toxic chemicals.
  • Although hydro power does not cause any air or water pollution, it severely impacts the fish population and causes relocation of the people and animals living near the dam sites. Moreover, it changes the water temperature.
Energy Resources

Thus, all energy resources have an impact on the environment. There is no such thing as ‘clean’ source of energy. The consolation is that the renewable resources cause lesser environmental impacts than the non-renewable resources of energy. Research is still on for the development of resources which are long lasting and have minimal environmental impacts!

Stay tuned with Byju’s to learn more about environmental impacts assessments, natural resources conservation and much more.

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