Why is ethanol dangerous?


Quick Answer

Ethanol is dangerous because it is a highly flammable liquid that can be poisonous with skin contact or ingestion in its pure forms. Ethanol is also the ingredient in alcoholic beverages, and consumption of it can lead to liver disease, heart problems and alcoholism.

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Full Answer

Ethanol is also known as ethyl alcohol or spirit alcohol. It should be handled with care. If a person comes into contact with pure ethanol, medical attention should be sought. This includes eye and skin contact. Alcohol, when consumed within a beverage, can also lead to alcohol poisoning, coma and death if too much is ingested. In such cases, medical attention should also be sought immediately.

Depending on its usage, ethanol can be beneficial if used properly. When added to fuel, such as gasoline, ethanol helps reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 34 percent, according to the Renewable Fuels Association. Additionally, ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emissions and carbon monoxide emissions. When ethanol is produced, it requires one unit of energy, and produces on average, 2.3 units of usable energy.

No matter its usage, ethanol is dangerous to handle or consume, and should only be done so by experienced professionals. It is also important to consume alcoholic beverages in a responsible manner.

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