Impacts of Energy Sources

Tidal Energy

The factors needed to determine the ideal shore location of a tidal power plant include a large tidal range and a funnel shaped shoreline pointing inland. The infrastructure (basic building facilities and installations) required to develop tidal energy is a tidal power plant to make power and the electrical grid for power distribution.

Advantages of Tidal Energy

Tidal energy does not create air, water, or thermal pollution. Once a dam, barrage or tidal fence is built, the energy production is free since tidal power harnesses the natural power of tides. It does not require the transport of fuels or disposal of waste products.

Energy output from tidal power generators is predictable since we can accurately predict when tides occur. This makes tidal energy reliable and easy to integrate with the grid. It is also sustainable because its energy comes from the lunar and solar cycle.

Disadvantages of Tidal Energy

There are a limited number of locations worldwide that have tidal ranges large enough to make tidal power cost-effective. Tidal power systems are currently expensive to develop and they cannot be built in any location. Tidal energy systems that use dams may restrict fish migration. These dams may also cause silt to build up along the dam. This build up affects a tidal basin ecosystem in negative ways, causing habitat changes for aquatic life as well as for birds that may rely on low tides to unearth mud flats that are used as feeding areas.

Tidal dams, barrages, and fences may affect commercial and recreational shipping patterns requiring the need to find alternative routes or costly systems to navigate through a barrage or dam systems.



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