The City of Portland, Oregon has partnered with Lucid Energy to develop a hydropower system within the city that will use green innovation to reduce the costs of delivering water to customers. The patented system uses an in-pipe turbine to capture energy from fast-moving water inside gravity-fed water pipelines to produce low-cost electricity. The system is targeted at large water users such as municipal water and wastewater systems and water-intensive industries such as pulp and paper plants. For a detailed overview of the system, see here.
Oregon has undertaken other hydroelectric projects as well. Currently in the permitting process, the Reedsport wave power station is expected to deliver approximately 4,140 megawatter hours/years, or enough electricity to power about 375 homes (see earlier blogpost for more information on the wave park).
According to the Energy Information Administration, over the last decade, hydroelectricity has provided approximately seven percent of electricity in the United States and 63 percent of the electricity from all renewable sources. Hydropower electricity continues to flourish across the United States because many in the industry have recognized the flexibility and reliability that hydropower offers. One advantage to hydropower facilities is they are generally able to go from zero to maximum output very quickly, thus providing essential back-up power for sudden changes in demand for electricity.
Explore energytrends.org to view hydroelectric generation and use broken down on a state-by-state basis.