Environmental Hydrology & Hydro-Electric Power Assignment Sample

Environmental Hydrology and Hydro-Electric Power Assignment Analysis and Insights

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Introduction Of Environmental Modelling Hydrology & Hydro-Electric Power

The term “Hydroelectricity” is a type of energy source that is renewable which utilizes the force of falling water to produce electricity. With minimal maintenance requirements the hydroelectric power stations can produce electricity continuously for more than "50" years in this regard. This particular assignment measures in great detail about the design and planning of the “hydroelectric” power plant in question. Moreover, this includes the location of power house, selection of the intake of power house, construction expenditure estimates, weir geometry, and restrictions from the environment, probable solutions and many more. It is also very important to consider the fact that the small-scale hydropower plants have garnered a sufficient amount of attention in the past few years. The sole reason for the aforementioned aspect is the potential of such plants to render renewable and clean energy on the whole.

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As the hydroelectric power has been used for more than a century, it now generates around "16%" of the world's total electricity. Since hydroelectric power depends upon water which gets replenished by way of the "hydrological cycle" in general. This is the sole reason for which it is seen as a renewable energy source (Kahsay et al. 2019). Hydroelectric power can be produced regularly as long as there is a steady supply of running water. But when it comes to the fossil fuels, there exists a limited number of resources. This in turn makes it an environmentally viable solution to meet the ever-growing need of the society as far as the factor of energy is concerned. In comparison to the other means of producing electricity such as coal, oil, as well as natural gas, the hydroelectric power is a dependable and adaptable energy source which provides a number of advantages on the whole. Moreover, it is also an efficient, clean energy source that emits zero greenhouse gasses, airborne contaminants, and hazardous waste respectively.

Choices of Locations and Intake

Here, the selection of the power-house and intake are extremely crucial in this context, as they are critical in the generation of sufficient power for the power plant. There are a number of factors such as water’s height and the rate of the flow and based upon these the location of intake needs to be selected (Stadnyk et al. 2020). Furthermore, the location of the power-house requires to be determined by way of the space available, proper placement of the turbines, and distance from intake respectively.

Optimum Configuration

The optimum configuration pertaining to the aspects of weir geometry, hydrological statistics, as well as associated generation in this case has been determined. The usage of the software platform named “MS-Excel” has taken place to perform the aforementioned.

The chart in the above image is showcasing the aspect of weir cross-section in this regard. The platform of software called “MS-excel” is utilized to obtain this chart in particular.

The maximum as well as minimum values of the water is showcased by way of the chart shown in the section above. This outcome is obtained with the help of the software platform named “MS-Excel”.

The above image showcases the changes in the values inside the columns named “Loch outflow”, and “Outflow level” with respect to the cells which are marked “green” in particular.

This picture displays the fact that once the values of the parameters inside the “green” cells are altered, the values within the cells marked “yellow” also change in this regard.

Estimates of the cost of construction Configuration

The projections pertaining to the aspect of cost have been obtained by consulting the respective engineering companies with expertise in building hydroelectric power plants. The expected cost of building the facility that has taken into account the cost of supplies, labour, and equipment is £5 million in particular.

Estimation of the revenue and assessment of the financial viability

The overall estimation of the projected revenue over the concerned time frame is performed for determining the project's financial sustainability. Moreover, the revenue obtained from this plant per year has also been estimated in this context. The value of the estimated revenue has been compared to the “estimated” cost of the construction for determining the “financial” viability pertaining to this project. On the basis of the concerned analysis, the project in question has turned out to be feasible for that matter.

Assumption Details

Numerous assumptions have been made while the process of analysis has been in progress. It includes the rate of water flow, price of electricity, and many more. Moreover, the assumptions have also been made for the turbines’ efficacy and the costs incurred to run the power plant in general.

Environmental Constraints

The environment can be impacted by hydroelectric power facilities in both beneficial and detrimental ways. The creation of the renewable energy sources along with a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions are the positive effects (Ramachandra et al. 2020). The changes in the water flow systems and the effect on aquatic ecosystems are examples of the negative effects. Moreover, there also exists a number of environmental limitations. The installation of the fish ladder for the sole purpose of permitting the fish passage can turn out to be an effective solution in this regard. Furthermore, the routine water quality monitoring to keep track of any alterations in water chemistry can be put in place to address all of the concerns in this context


Investigating the idea of incorporating energy storage devices into the plant, such as batteries or pumped hydro storage, would be one potential enhancement (Suprayogi et al. 2020). Greater flexibility in energy production and delivery as well as the capacity to store surplus energy during times of low demand would be made possible by this.

The aspect of incorporating the devices pertaining to energy storage can be introduced into the plant. This includes the pumped “hydro-storage”, batteries, and many others. A greater degree of flexibility in the aspects of energy production, delivery can also be beneficial in this regard. This in turn assists in the storage of excess energy when the plant witnesses very low demand.


Further amounts of research needs to be done to evaluate the plant's long-term environmental effects (Venkatcharyulu et al. 2020). This needs to take place particularly in relation to modifications to the patterns in water flow along with the aquatic ecosystems. For the sole purpose of ensuring the fact that any of the potential harmful effects are minimized the periodic water quality testing also needs to be carried out.


The building of the hydroelectric power station at the concerned site can turn out to be a financially sound way to produce renewable energy. Although there exist some environmental issues these can be successfully addressed by putting in place the right kind of policies. This includes the fish ladder as well as monitoring of water quality. The feasibility and adaptability of the plant can verily be increased with the additional upgrades such as the energy storage systems for that matter.


  • Kahsay, T.N., Arjoon, D., Kuik, O., Brouwer, R., Tilmant, A. and van der Zaag, P., 2019. A hybrid partial and general equilibrium modeling approach to assess the hydro-economic impacts of large dams–the case of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam in the Eastern Nile River basin. Environmental Modelling & Software, 117, pp.76-88.
  • Ramachandra, T.V., Vinay, S., Bharath, S., Chandran, M.S. and Aithal, B.H., 2020. Insights into riverscape dynamics with the hydrological, ecological and social dimensions for water sustenance. Curr Sci, 118(9), pp.1379-1393.
  • Stadnyk, T.A. and Holmes, T.L., 2020. On the value of isotope-enabled hydrological model calibration. Hydrological Sciences Journal, 65(9), pp.1525-1538.
  • Suprayogi, I., Anon, A., Anon, J., Anon, N., Anon, B. and Anon, A., 2020. Development of the Inflow Prediction Model on Tropical Reservoir Using Adaptive Neuro Fuzzy Inference System. Technology, 11(4), pp.171-183.
  • Venkatcharyulu, S. and Viswanadh, G.K., 2020. Model Study of Decision Support System for Water Management. In E3S Web of Conferences (Vol. 184, p. 01119). EDP Sciences.
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