There are various ways in which electricity is generated, including fossil fuels, solar, and hydroelectric power. For decades, the world has been dependent on non-renewable sources of energy to meet the requirements of the increasing population. Hydroelectricity is a form of renewable energy and is generated by harnessing the power of moving water. The moving water is run through the blades of the turbines. Humans have been harnessing water to work for thousands of years. The Greeks used hydroelectric power to turn water wheels for grinding wheat into flour.
With the advancement in technology, the state of machinery used to generate electricity has improved tremendously and there are many ways in which hydroelectricity has improved the living conditions.
In the early days, trip hammers powered by a water wheel were used to pound and hull grains, Richard Arkwright in 1771 set up one of the world’s first factory systems using hydropower to spin cotton. This invention significantly increased the efficiency of cotton spinning and therefore paving the way for the production of textiles on an unprecedented scale. Due to its low cost, hydropower was seen as one of the best ways to meet the growing energy demand and is often tied to the development of energy-intensive industries such as steel works and aluminium smelters. Hydroelectric power was harnessed in the early paper making industries. Water was used to turn turbines which powered machinery used in paper-making.In the modern world, hydroelectric power is used to generate electricity. Industries use electricity to run machinery used for production. This has dramatically improved the well being of developing and developed countries. Industrialization is arguably the most significant achievement of hydropower.
Water flowing downhill has for long been used to power agricultural operations. In the past, water from a flowing stream was used to turn a wheel, which mechanically drove the flour grinders. In the advancement of technology, bigger dams and reservoirs have been built, and this has been an opportunity for water releases for irrigation purposes. Water stored in tanks is released for irrigation during dry seasons. This is among the advantages of hydroelectric energy as it improves food security. As a result of the growing population, there is a rise in food demand. Due to the changing climatic conditions all over the globe, irrigation is becoming a significant source of food production.
Water power has for the longest time been associated with kick starting economic development in the world. Hydropower schemes are substantial contributions to the economies of most developing and developed countries. Some countries that produce hydroelectric energy are known to export power to their neighbors with no power. This has enabled countries to increase their GDP and revenue. he construction and maintenance of hydropower points are also a source of employment to hundreds of people thereby reducing the rate of unemployment.
Hydroelectricity has dramatically impacted on the world’s production. For over 2000 years, it has helped human innovate and improve life and at the same time conserving the environment since hydropower is a form of renewable energy. The world has become a better place since the invention of hydropower and more inventions are coming up each day.