How Is Hydropower Affecting The Environment, Or Is It?

By   August 2, 2015

HydropowerAnother energy source that has made the headlines lately is hydropower. It creates electricity and doesn’t use fossil fuel to do it, therefore it doesn’t contribute to the emissions like coal, gas or oil does. What impact hydropower has on the environment varies on several different factors because of the water level fluctuating from the damming and lowering that is needed for the process.

When larger areas are affected by hydropower damming, it causes a decrease of water that the general public can use for outdoor activities. When there is less activity in an area known for its water that affects the economy in an area, and businesses close.

But most important that experts against this form of energy are concerned about is how it affects the climate. Hydropower damming as well because it affects the plants and trees in the area, and thus the carbon release is affected. Damming can put too much water in the reservoirs which causes a drop in the oxygen needed by the plants and trees and they rot.

Erosion Happens

Hydropower frequently can cause a key change on the flow of water. For example, while a river power plant doesn’t have any water reservoirs, it can change the level of the water flow. This in turn can cause erosion to happen in the regulation zones.

With hydropower advancement, there are power lines constructed along what was once a natural landscape and affects the natural flow of birds and other creatures. They often are caught up in the wiring and electrocuted.  The vegetation on the ground is affected by the power transmissions that are buried, which affects the growth of grass and the line that other animals and creatures eat.

Water is a natural environment for fish to live. It is their natural habitat. The level of the water and the speed of the water flowing determines how this habitat is constructed. When the water is drained for hydropower use, it can affect the fish lifestyle and livelihood.