The strongest renewable source globally, hydropower, generates more energy than either solar or wind combined. As well as, far above 90% of the global production power generation capacity is provided by drawing water down a hill, sometimes known as “pumped hydroelectricity.”
This renewable energy source, also called hydroelectricity, produces electricity by harnessing water flow in dams, streams, rivers, and other structures. We can produce hydropower, even on a small scale, by using residential pipes, rain, evaporation, or ocean tides to transport water.
So, what has the future in store for hydropower? Let us find out, according to Fred Auzenne.
Trends of Hydropower Around the World: By Fred Auzenne
Nevertheless, despite hydropower’s enormous influence, it is rarely discussed in the United States. Whereas the availability and cost of wind and solar energy have fallen precipitously over the last few years, local hydropower production has maintained comparatively stable since the countries have already constructed hydroelectric units in the most strategically advantageous areas.
The situation is different elsewhere. So over recent decades, China has propelled its growth in the economy by constructing tens of thousands of brand-new hydro plants, many of which are enormous. The same is planned for Nigeria, India, and other nations in the Asia-Pacific region.
However, growth without sufficient environmental modification could cause problems since reservoirs and dams disturb the ecosystems and river ecology nearby, and new research indicates that dams can release more methane and carbon dioxide than initially assumed. Hydro is also becoming less dependable due to weather dryness, as West America’s reservoirs recently lost a substantial portion of their ability to produce power.
Why Is Hydropower Frowned Upon? as per Fred Auzenne
There are mainly two reasons why hydropower is becoming unpopular these days: climate change and societal and environmental effects.
Societal And Environmental Effects
Hydropower frequently causes significant quantities of social upheaval and environmental harm.
The construction of hydroelectric dams, which will also result in a 20% decrease in extensive, available river systems home to freshwater fish species, pose a “dire threat” to biodiversity across Southeast Asia, Africa, and South America, according to a 2014 study.
The Yangtze became contaminated due to a Three Cascades dam project in China, which resulted in the eviction of over a million residents and the drowning of several industries, mines, and trash sites. Initiatives in Ethiopia, Turkey, and Brazil, too, have come under fire for uprooting residents.
According to Fred Auzenne, given that the enormous volumes of water required for the technique are constantly in jeopardy, climate change is anticipated to affect hydroelectric energy’s expansion significantly.
The whole hydrological system of rainfall, flow, and evaporating would be severely impacted by climate change, as it is currently doing so.
As per Fred Auzenne, the future of this energy source is highly dependent on how engineers develop different ways to tackle the issues that are trampling the potential of hydropower.