Why is it said that thermal power stations are common?

A thermal power station is where heat energy is used to generate electricity. It is the most conventional, and common source of electric power.

Let’s see how it works. A thermal power plant burns fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas to produce steam. The steam thus formed, creates a pressure that spins the turbine inside the plant. Electric power is generated by these spinning turbines.

The advantages of a thermal power plant is that it requires less initial cost, and less land compared to other power stations. The fuel used – fossil fuel- is also cheap. Many countries in the world depend mainly on thermal power for electricity. It is said that around 40 per cent of the world’s power is made out of fossil fuels.

However, thermal power plants have been criticized for the pollution they cause, due to the large amount of smoke and carbon dioxide emitted. This is a cause of global warming. Besides, the overall efficiency of a thermal power station is below 30 per cent.