The Environmental Impact of Hydropower Electricity

Hydropower is known as the energy source that allows it possible to create electricity without the need of fossil fuels. It is not associated with any emissions caused by electricity in oil, coal, or any gas power plants. Environmental impact of hydropower is closely related to effects on nature caused by damming or a lowering of water level, changes in water flow and the construction of roadways and power lines. The environmental impact of hydropower electricity depends on many things.

Large areas that are affected by damming will cause a decrease in the public having access to many areas, which affects outdoor recreational activities. Damming also has a great affect on the climate, due to the increased amounts of carbon released by trees and many plants. This carbon is released when the reservoirs have too much water, causing the trees and plants to rot due to the lack of oxygen.

Hydropower often can cause a major change on the water in a watercourse. When a river power plant does not have water reservoirs, there can be changes in the level of water flow. Changes in the water level can cause erosion to the regulation zones.

Power lines are known as foreign objects to nature and can destruct natural landscapes. Power lines can affect the number of birds, which is caused by either collision or by a short circuit related to contact. When power transmissions are used as underground cables, it can affect hydrology and vegetation in the environment.

The natural environment that fish live in is what they use as a habitat. This habitat is constructed based on water level and the speed of water, which also provided the fish with a food source. Draining would lead to much devastation to the habitat. Fish will be affected differently depending on the size and type of species. Many river systems are still known to be good fishing rivers.