Even though new hydropower dam developments are intended to provide green energy, they can drown areas that are rich in plant and animal species. But this kind of collateral damage can be limited by strategic site selection, a new study shows.
The 1969 discovery of oil at the Ekofisk field in the North Sea transformed Norway into an internationally important energy nation. But long before black gold was being pumped from the Norwegian Continental Shelf, Norway’s economy was fuelled by a different kind of energy: hydropower.
Production of electricity is responsible for about a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions, and demand is poised to rise as underserved populations connect to the grid, and electronics and electric vehicles proliferate. So stopping global warming will require a transformation of electricity production. But it is important to avoid various environmental pitfalls in this transition, researchers say.
An international team of researchers has concluded that operational funding should continue to be provided for the production of renewable energy in Europe, provided that such support is progressively reduced over time.