Last Updated on March 11, 2021 by Filip Poutintsev
A fuel that is achieved after millions of years buried beneath the Earth’s surface formed through several natural processes like anaerobic digestion of deceased buried organisms comprising of biological particles originating in historical photosynthesis which then reliefs energy upon ignition, is known as fossil fuel. Some of the fossil fuel source date to about 650 million years back.
Natural gas, petroleum, coal, and sometimes peat are the most commonly known fossil fuels and have a very high concentration of carbon. Thus, for much more day-to-day use, fossil fuel is diluted and sold-off in the name of propane and kerosene.
The range of fossil fuel is diverse from low carbon-to-hydrogen proportioned volatile materials, to liquids, to stable materials with nearly pure carbon. Among these three ranges falls all the fossil fuels such as methane, petroleum, and anthracite coal, where methane can only be discovered in the fields of hydrocarbon, in methane clathrates’ form or linked with oil.
The usage of fossil fuel can be found all over the globe as almost everything in this world is powered-up by the application of fossil fuel. Home appliances such as lights, fans, etc. to cars and heavy machinery, everything utilizes fossil fuel as its energy source.
Although, despite its wide application and popularity, the usage of fossil fuel currently is a topic of debate and many are wondering whether it is appropriate to continue relying upon it. Hence, to simplify your concern, here are some of the pros and cons related to fossil fuel.
Table of Contents
Pros of Fossil Fuel
Some of the major benefits of fossil fuel are listed below:
1. Easily Procurable
Unlike renewable energy sources, fossil fuel can be procured from several places throughout the world. Places deep inside the earth with rich veins are highly probable to comprise of fossil fuel. The ease in the availability of fossil fuel is such that every county is at least equipped with one rich fossil fuel source.
2. Simple Set-up
As discussed above, the availability of fossil fuel, unlike renewable energy sources, is wide and thus setting up the plant for extracting fossil fuel can be done anywhere regardless of the environmental conditions. The fossil fuel plant set-up with being simple is also proficient in producing a large amount of energy per location.
3. Highly Efficient
Fossil fuels are highly efficient as with the consumption of the very little amount of it, a large amount of energy can be generated. To date, to power-up the motor vehicles like cars and buses, petroleum is the only one found to be highly efficient.
Regardless of advancement in the renewable energy department, not a single renewable energy type can compete with the efficiency offered by fossil fuels.
4. Employment Opportunity
For the extraction of fossil fuels many workers are required and hence thousands of opportunities for employment open up every year to cope with the high amount of manpower requirement. Thus, many families, especially in extreme regions, can improve their lifestyle.
5. Easy Transfer
Transferring fossil fuels is quite simple and safe as it can be transferred to any desired location via pipelines. Not in every location is it possible to lay pipes for transporting fossil fuels, but almost every fossil fuel plant comprises of pipelines to transfer fuel to a definite location from where it is further distributed via trucks.
Cons of Fossil Fuel
Despite the presented benefits, there are several cons of fossil fuel because of which people nowadays are being concerned regarding its use. The cons are listed below:
Fossil fuel unlike solar, wind energy, etc. is a non-renewable source of energy and can get depleted from the Earth anytime soon. Once it has been completely used, we will have to rely on alternative and more sustainable energy sources as it takes millions of years to form.
One of the prime drawbacks of fossil fuels is the pollution it causes on its combustion. Several scientists around the world have written down the effect of fossil fuel on the environment. Fossil fuel combustion releases carbon dioxide onto the air which then depletes the ozone layer and catalysts in the ongoing global warming crisis.
3. Health Risk for the Miners
Mining coals is an extremely dangerous and laborious job and the well-being of the workers inside the mine also gets compromised. Throughout the mining process, the mine is covered up in dust which gets inhaled by the miners. The ingestion of dust might render the worker unhealthy.
Regardless of the easy availability of fossil fuels, not every country can set-up the plant and start extracting fuel as it costs a fortune that not every country can afford. Thus, many countries are required to import fuel from the rich nations to satisfy their need which leads to an increase in the cost of fuel.
5. Compromised Public Well-Being
As mentioned above, the combustion of fossil fuels is the prime cause of pollution which then results in various environmental risks. Millions of children are dying every year because of the diseases related to pollution and most of the people living in urban areas have a high possibility of suffering from any respiratory diseases such as asthma, etc.
Finally, after reviewing all the above-mentioned pros and cons of fossil fuel one is likely to understand that on one hand fossil fuel is the prime requirement in the current world as no other renewable energy source can offer such efficiency as it does. It is also easily available in wide areas making the plant set-up simple too.
While on the other hand, it is the prime cause of the ongoing global warming crisis, and many people throughout the world are affected by the rate of pollution it brings. Because of fossil fuel, the harm on the environment is almost unrepairable, and thus for the well-being of the entire planet and the living organisms, efficient renewable energy source as soon as possible should be discovered and implemented.