• Beth Bahr

Switzerland Hydropower

Switzerland isn’t just known for its charming scenery, Albert Einstein developing his famous formula E=MC2, or their extremely low crime rate. Switzerland is admired for producing around 19 million gigawatt hours a year of renewable energy. Hydropower is the country’s most important renewable energy.

Hydropower accounts for approximately 56 percent of Switzerland’s domestic electricity production. Hydropower uses water stored in dams and flowing rivers to create electricity in hydropower plants. A typical hydropower plant is a system that consists of three parts:

· An electric plant, where the electricity is produced.

· A Dam that can be opened or closed, to control water flow.

· A reservoir where water can be stored. An example would be an artificial lake.

There are over 556 hydroelectric power plants placed around Switzerland. With each power plant, the emphasis on its negative effects are brought to the surface. Designs for the hydroelectric power plants are made to not be a monstrosity to onlookers. Also, when building a dam, it becomes an obstacle for fish migration. How is this issue resolved? A fish pass is installed which allows migrating fish to roam freely.

Last year, Switzerland came up with a plan that tie’s in closely with the government’s Energy Strategy 2050. The aim is to completely phase out nuclear energy by the mid-point of the century, promoting renewable sources and reduce energy consumption.

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