Impacts of Hydroelectric Development on the Environment

Concerned with increasing energy prices, balance of payment problems and reliability energy supplies, many countries are reassessing the role of hydroelectric energy within national energy policies. Since hydroelectric generation does not consume water, the projects- once developed- can be used to provide water for agricultural and industrial developments, two major problems faced by all developing countries. While the primary impacts of the majority of hydroelectric developments have been beneficial, it is now evident that they have also contributed to several adverse environmental effects. Two such major environmental impacts are discussed: problems due to erosion and sedimentation and implications of inundations, especially in terms of resettlement.

By Asit K. Biswas, 1982. Article published in Energy Policy, Volume 10, Number 4, pages 349-354. DOI: 10.1016/0301-4215(82)90050-7

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