Are there any harmful byproducts from geothermal energy?



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    There are several potential drawbacks to geothermal energy.  The fluids drawn from the earth carry greenhouse gases such as CO2, methane, and ammonia that get released into the atmosphere.  On average, a geothermal plant emits about 122 kg (270 lbs) of CO2 per kilowatt hours of energy produced, which pales in comparison to the emissions from fossil fuels. 

    Additionally, super heated water that’s extracted can contain small amounts of harmful metals such as mercury and arsenic.  Lastly, construction of geothermal plants can result in land instability.  In several separate incidences, increased levels of seismic activity have taken place following the construction and extraction of geothermal resources.

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