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Name: Virginia Goldsmith
Status: Studnet
Age: 50s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 10/6/99 


Question:
I would like any recent information you have regarding thermal pollution of fresh water lakes by electrical generating facilities.



Replies:
I do not have current values for you, but in April of 1971, I did research in this area that may help. I calculated the approximate solar energy input into Lake Michigan. I took into account angle of the sun, albedo, cloud cover, ice cover, etc. It was found to be about 1.4 * 10^20 calories per year. I did not find the caloric input from the earth. The Zion Illinois nuclear plant was putting 1.61 * 10^13 calories per year (at full production). This is not significant.

If we look at just plume size instead of the entire lake, solar input is 7.6 * 10^15 calories per year. Clearly, the power plant is effecting the heating of the area by 0.2% which is very small.

The Zion plant is no longer in production, and was one of the larger plants on Lake Michigan.

I hope this information helps!

Nathan A. Unterman



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