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CONS Geothermal energy has its disadvantages as well. Geothermal energy production can release chemical gases like hydrogen sulfide, which smells like rotten eggs. This gas turns into SO2 or sulfur dioxide, a gas that can contribute to heart and lung issues if inhaled. This is true only for open-loop geothermal systems. Closed loop geothermal systems don’t release hydrogen sulfide. Open system also releases other gases such as ammonia, CO2, methane, and boron. However, the amount of hydrogen sulfide released from open system geothermal facilities is still far less than those produced by coal plants. Some geothermal plants also generate mercury, which has to be disposed of properly.




June 2016 Issue No. 004

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