Hydropower has been the unsung hero worldwide, and it is true of India as well – hydro-electricity is about 15% of all electricity we generate in India.
But hydro-electricity generation has its problems. The toughest might be political and societal problems, but there are issues with capital costs, cost and time over-runs and ecological damage possibilities.
I read a detailed article today in the Financial Express on the various ways by which the hydro-power can be tapped in a far better way (India has a potential for about 90000 MW capacity while we are currently using the equivalent of only about 18000 MW). One of the interesting suggestions I found had to do with the prices of electricity generated from hydro sources.
Hydro-electricity being a useful option for peak load power generation, and given the fact that it is pollution free, the article argued that electricity from this energy source needs to be given an incentive by providing an option for premium pricing. To me, this sounds like a very sensible idea. While we are rightly doing a lot of investments for wind and solar, I think an equal or more attention needs to be provided to hydro-electricity – a technology that is already mature and that is already satisfying a significant % of the country’s energy demand.