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Here at Sheffield Renewables we knew that we weren’t the only ones wanting to create electricity from hydro sources, what we didn’t know is the extent of its use in other countries. So here come the very impressive figures; 59% of Austria’s, 69% Of Canada’s, 79% of Iceland’s, 87% of Brazil’s and a massive 99% of Norway’s electricity comes from hydro sources!! It is estimated that by 2030 hydroelectricity will account for 23% of all worldwide generation capacity, and currently represents the largest proportion (over a quarter) of renewable energy Clean Development Mechanism projects. All this is very good but only 33% of the world’s potential hydro power sources have been developed (this will obviously increase once Jordan Dam is built).

Hydro power is currently offsetting the equivalent of 5 million barrels of oil PER DAY, giving a carbon offset of 2.1 billion tonnes each year, if the remaining potential is tapped into it could offset an additional 7 billion tonnes. According to climate change scientists we need to reduce the amount of carbon that we put in to the atmosphere by nearly 60 billion tonnes per year; hydro may not save the world but it could definitely make a considerable contribution to reducing carbon levels.

Unlike other sources of renewable power, hydro is generally more reliable than other forms of renewable energy, such as wind and solar and, once built, hydro is considerably cleaner and less expensive then electricity generated from oil and gas.

If all of this hasn’t persuaded you that hydropower schemes are a great idea take a minute to consider the fish. An Archimedes screw, such as the one to be used at Jordan Dam, is extremely fish friendly. The fish may get a little dizzy but they can pass through the screw unharmed, Archimedes screws are used as ‘pumps’ to move fish from tank to tank. This combined with the fish pass that Sheffield Renewables will be putting in with the scheme, means that fish will be able to migrate upstream. The weir currently hinders this and the hope is that the scheme will bring with it a rejuvenated eco system.

You can see how the scheme at Jordan Dam will work with our interactive model:

https://www.sheffieldrenewables.org.uk/projects/jordan-dam-hydro/see-how-it-works/

Some of the information above was obtained from the following links:

http://www.geni.org/

http://www.energyville.com/sourcesanddemands/hydro/

http://www.westernrenew.co.uk/wre/hydro_basics/machines/archimedes_screw_turbines

http://sepengineering.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=44&Itemid=31

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/global-warmings-terrifying-new-math-20120719

 

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