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Hydropower Energy Companies

Run-of-River Hydropower Takes Hold

Written by Sam Hopkins
Posted June 8, 2009 at 6:05PM

The #1 threat to energy supply security that we face today is underinvestment, bar none.

New stats from Goldman Sachs show that the number of oil & gas projects approved in 2008 barely equaled the total for 2002.

In 2009, exploration by the world's petroleum powers will drop even more to just 1/6 of the 2006 peak.

But there are bountiful energy resources out there that you don't need to drill for. . .

And water is the first and best of these.

Hydropower is making a comeback, and it's hardly the same old "dam" story we've been told for generations.

Last week in Wealth Daily's sister publication Green Chip Review, we gave readers access to a full report on the top water-to-energy technology we're tracking, including the names of no fewer than 5 companies in on the uptrend.

It's called run-of-river hydropower, and it will soon power hundreds of thousands of homes worldwide. 

Here's an excerpt, with a link to the full report below:


Run-of-River Scores a Win in Canada

In the province of British Columbia, run-of-river power has been run through the political mill lately.

The New Democratic Party stumped for a 6-month moratorium on private power projects that encompassed several clean energy technologies. Hydro was included on the forced dormancy list, so were wind and biomass (the local solar resource is negligible).

But the Liberal Party won, and Canadian clean energy investors didn't just breathe a sigh of relief — they also propelled shares of companies like
Plutonic Power (TSX:PCC) to new highs.

Vancouver-based Plutonic Power's stock jumped by more than 20% on the heels of the May 12 vote.

From March 3 to June 3, PCC shot up by 83%!

That one company has at least 17 small-scale hydroelectricity generation sites planned for the hilly headwaters of Bute Inlet, a fjord just north of Vancouver and Vancouver Island.

Below, you see the layout of how run-of-river generation works in Plutonic Power's proposals:

plutonic run of river power

This run-of-river design diverts some water into a pipe called a penstock, which channels the river water into turbines for generation. Then, the water goes back into the stream with little or no net effect on downstream water levels.

That's perhaps the most salient difference between dams and ROR projects in terms of environmental impact and the regulatory hoops specialty firms have to jump through.

Hoover Dam, that national landmark and symbol of how long hydro has given power to the American Southwest, has a generating capacity of just over 2000 MW.

If approved, Plutonic's modular Bute Inlet array will be optimized to generate more than 1000 MW!


You can access the whole report at absolutely no cost right here:

And to make sure you get the first crack at our next energy briefing, check out Green Chip Review today.



Sam Hopkins

International Editor

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