The long lifespan of this type of facilities makes them one of the most used renewable resources today. In the case of countries like Spain, it offers an excellent way to reduce external energy dependence since it can be produced in the country itself.
In addition, it helps reduce the emission of greenhouse gases , by serving as a substitute for other more polluting sources to produce electricity. It is estimated that each kWh produced in a hydroelectric plant prevents the import of about 220 grams of oil. In a year of average hydroelectric production, Spain annually saves the import of some seven million tons of oil equivalent (tep).
Hydraulic resources facilitate the management of energy demand peaks , since water deposited in reservoirs is available for use. Therefore, it is a renewable source that allows its storage, which helps the security of supply.
Economic advantagesAlthough a very important investment is necessary for the development of the infrastructures that make up a hydroelectric plant, in the long run, this type of energy is cheap. Although hydraulic energy is part of a natural resource - water currents - its development requires the construction of swamps, dams, bypass channels and the installation of large turbines and equipment to generate electricity. However, once this phase is over, its operating costs are low, and its technological improvement makes efficient use of the available hydraulic resources.
In addition, the indirect economic advantages that hydraulic energy can have for the inhabitants of the area where a plant is installed must be taken into account . The reservoirs of hydroelectric power plants can serve to economically revitalize a population, not only during its construction phase. Reservoirs can become recreational areas of tourist attraction, which will boost the creation of small tourism companies that generate employment and others that are responsible for the operation and maintenance of the facilities.
Additionally, the dams in the rivers, in addition to serving to produce electricity , are very useful for regulating the flow of the river. In this way, dangerous flooding of the flow can be avoided and water can be supplied to the crops and the population in times of severe drought. In short, it is a renewable and clean energy with high energy efficiency.