The impact of hydropower

Hydropower is lauded as a green’ energy source. But actually, it seems little is known amongst the angling and river conservation movement of the potential (often realised) for hydropower schemes to fragment river habitats and their fish populations, prevent free passage of those fish along the river, suck fish into the turbines and give a new lease of life to weirs that should come out for the benefit of the river.

In the UK, some have described a Klondike-like rush to fit hydropower schemes to rivers in Scotland, often with poor (even non-existent) fish passage arrangements. But the threat to the UK’s rivers seems small change when compared to the situation in the Balkans, highlighted in a new report published by RiverWatch:

The report paints a worrying picture of 2700 projected hydropower schemes in a region famed for its pristine rivers and unique fish assemblages.

There’s lots more on hydropower on the WTT website — click here for the library page and here for a video from the Trout in the Town blog.