Perhaps. There are currently 45,000 dams in the US and plans to build more. One dam in Missouri, the Bagnell Dam, has been profitably generating electricity for customers since 1931. The potential exists for the global electricity supply to be met using hydroelectric power on dammed rivers.
I believe the US should be looking into this power source more. Water is the most common renewable resource available in America currently. Right now this power only accounts for 7% used in the United States. It is strange we are not using it more simply because we have the utilities and it doesn’t call for a large dam to create. One small conductor can hoist enough power to run a home, farm, or ranch. With a country that is so consumed with money, we are not using one of the cheapest power sources. Doesn’t make much sense.
While hydropower is a renewable source of energy that should be explored, researched, and perhaps implemented, the environmental impact of dams often go overlooked. Dams cause a massive habitat upheaval for aquatic life. Spawning patterns are disrupted often leading to population decreases of aquatic species. Water quality often goes down as the placid pool evaporates and becomes more concentrated with silt and the water becomes less saturated with oxygen. Effecting humans, dams require a flooding of the surrounding area which can cause massive relocation of villages. An example of this has been seen in the Three Gorges Project in China.
Although hydropower is an alternative fuel source and, I personally believe the US should explore alternative methods and lessen its dependence on coal, I hesitate to claim that hydropower is the vehemently correct solution.
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