6 Hydropower Benefits that sparked global interests
As our fossil fuel reserves run out at an increasingly alarming rate, the mission to find a better, cleaner, and more sustainable replacement energy source has taken priority. Out of the many candidates currently competing for the number one spot on the renewable energy sources list, the countless hydropower benefits have sparked worldwide interest.
If you are unsure of what hydropower is, it is quite simply power generated by harnessing the kinetic energy present in flowing water. Unlike fossil fuels, we are quite unlikely to run out of water anytime in the coming centuries. This, combined with numerous other hydropower benefits make generating electricity this way an attractive alternative to using fossil fuels.
How do hydroelectric dams work?
Hydropower is a type of energy that relies on the motion of water. This is exactly how hydroelectric dams generate electricity.
Hydroelectric dams are made from concrete, steel, and other materials, and they are usually a few hundred feet tall. They are built on rivers, lakes, or other bodies of water since water is their primary resource in generating electricity. The water is diverted into the dam through an opening called an intake.
Water stored in hydroelectric dams contains large amounts of gravitational potential energy since they are several feet above sea level. Water is released in controlled amounts by opening the floodgates of the dam. Hydroelectric dams work by using the kinetic energy of water flowing downstream to turn a turbine. Water required for this process is stored in the artificial reservoir. The kinetic energy from the turning turbines is used to turn a generator, which converts the kinetic energy into electricity.
There are several difficulties associated with generating electricity this way, the most prominent being the large cost of building a hydroelectric dam. Another problem is a large amount of water that is being released from the dam, which can cause a negative impact on communities and ecosystems located directly below.
However, the drawbacks do not outweigh the hydropower benefits dams provide, such as the minimal environmental impact when compared to using fossil fuels. Second, they have a very long lifespan. They can last up to 50 years without needing major repairs or updates. Finally, they produce zero emissions, which makes them a good choice for environmentally-conscious businesses.
Three types of hydropower
There are three main types of hydropower: hydroelectric dams, wave buoys, and water wheels.
Hydroelectric dams are large artificial reservoirs that release water through a flood gate, in controlled amounts. As mentioned above, the flowing water turns a turbine, which turns a turbine. The turbine is connected to a generator that converts the kinetic energy of downstream water to electrical energy.
Wave power the ocean’s waves to generate electricity. Waves contain a large amount of kinetic energy in them, which can be harvested by building buoys. These buoys are submerged a few feet below the surface, and bob up and down as a wave passes by. The kinetic energy harvested through these movements is used to generate electricity. Wave power has the potential to be developed in most coastal areas around the world, to reap the full potential of hydropower benefits.
Water wheel hydroelectricity uses a large wheel that is constantly turning as water flows through it. The force of the water causes the wheel to rotate, which creates electricity. This type of hydroelectric generator is usually found in the countryside, where you could easily find a flowing stream of water to build an off-grid hydroelectric generator.
Six benefits of hydropower
There are many benefits to using hydropower to generate electricity. Here are six undeniable hydropower benefits:
1. Hydropower doesn’t produce any emissions, which makes it a good option for environmentally conscious people. It also has a low impact on the environment, which makes it a good choice for countries that want to protect their environment.
2. Hydropower is an affordable way to generate electricity. Compared to other forms of electricity, hydropower is relatively cheap. This is mainly due to the fact that its primary resource, water, comes completely free of charge.
3. Hydropower plants has a long lifespan. The equipment used to generate hydropower typically lasts for decades, which means that it can be used over and over again without needing to be replaced. This makes it a good choice for countries that want to invest in renewable energy sources.
4. Hydropower is a sustainable source of energy. Hydropower plants don’t release any pollutants into the air, and they can be operated without damaging the economy or our future abilities to generate power.
5. Hydropower has enormous potential for generating electricity. It can be used to power everything from homes to factories and businesses. In fact, hydropower is the world’s largest renewable energy source, accounting for around 16% of global electricity generation.
6. One of the most important hydropower benefits is that it is renewable. This means that the energy that is used to power our businesses and homes can be recovered. After all, water doesn’t get used up; instead, it is in a never-ending cycle.
Hydropower has been used for many years to generate electricity. Not only is it a natural and environmentally-friendly way to produce electricity, but it also generates power at a much lower cost. The hydropower benefits are plenty when opposed to other methods of power generation, such as coal-fired power plants. While hydroelectric dams have been around for quite some time now, in the near future we may begin to see the widespread adoption of all hydropower generation methods.