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What are some negative effects of biomass energy?

I have a report on renewable resources and I need some negative effects of biomass energy.


  1. Disadvantages of Biomass Energy:
    1.Combustion of wood and other biomass, gives out carbon dioxide thus adding to global warming. In some cases, the wood is from the forests and in such cases, instead of getting a lesser ratio of carbon released to carbon captured, the ratio is greatly increased. This means that a great amount of carbon is added to the atmosphere – a lot more than what could have been recaptured by the forests.
    2.Although biomass fuels are renewable fuel sources, there is still no significant reduction in their emission levels. Biofuels produce the same amounts of harmful pollutants as fossil fuels. There is actually a chance of increased pollution, due to incomplete combustion of biomass, which produces black carbon, a major contributor to global warming.
    3.The food vs. fuel debate is one of the disadvantages of using biomass energy. Large areas of crop and farm land are used for growing biomass. This cultivation of crops for fuel might just put a little too much strain on our other limited resources such as water and land which could be used for food crops. This is also called the food vs. fuel debate. People all over the world question this use of resources for producing energy to support our lavish lifestyles while people in other underdeveloped countries starve without adequate food to eat.
    4.Another one of the biomass energy disadvantages is that at times, it is just not economical to produce, grow and transport biomass. This is especially true when the source of biomass is not too close to the area of processing or the methods used to process it are wasteful.
    5.Another biomass energy disadvantage is that the cost of installing and maintaining the infrastructure for processing the biomass is very expensive. It involves making infrastructure for collecting, processing, and then purifying the biofuel. This is a long process and is often time consuming, although research continues and success is being seen in reducing the time and expenditure involved.
    6.Biomass fuels usually have lower fuel economy than normal fossil fuels. They are not able to generate enough energy efficiently.
    7.Biomass production sometimes depends on seasonal crops such as corn for ethanol production. This makes it impossible to produce such biofuels all year round. This problem is being overcome by the use of waste materials and the cultivation of switchgrass, which can greatly reduce a number of drawbacks that using corn causes.
    8.The net energy gain from using biomass for energy is very low and steps have to be taken to improve the overall gain, from producing and using biomass.

  2. There are a lot of coal miners that could be put out of work if the country moved towards biomass energy, also companies like BP, Shell Oil and such would not be able to sell as much oil in the US.


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