- About 2 billion people in the world are currently without electricity.
- Electric ovens consume the most amount of electricity, followed by microwaves and central air conditioning.
- Accounting for only 5 percent of the world’s population, Americans consume 26 percent of the world’s energy.
- World-wide, about 20% of all electricity is generated by hydropower.
- Hydropower provides about 10% of the electricity in the United States.
- The United States is the second largest producer of hydropower in the world. Canada is number one.
- Norway produces more than 99% of its electricity with hydropower. New Zealand uses hydropower for 75% of its electricity.
- Hydropower can come “on line” quickly to meet rapid increases in electric demand and respond to emergency energy needs.
- Hydropower is clean. It prevents the burning of 22 billion gallons of oil or 120 million tons of coal each year.
- Hydropower does not produce greenhouse gasses or other air pollution.
- Hydropower leaves behind no waste.
- Hydropower is the most efficient way to generate electricity. Modern hydro turbines can convert as much as 90% of the available energy into electricity. The best fossil fuel plants are only about 50% efficient.
- Hydropower does not experience rising or unstable fuel costs. From 1985 to 1990 the cost of operating a hydropower plant grew at less than the rate of inflation.
- Hydropower is the leading source of renewable energy. It provides more than 97% of all electricity generated by renewable sources. Other sources including solar, geothermal, wind, and biomass account for less than 3% of renewable electricity production.
- Da Vinci predicted a solar industrialization as far back as 1447.
- In one hour more sunlight falls on the earth than what is used by the entire population in one year.
- A world record was set in 1990 when a solar powered aircraft flew 4060km across the USA, using no fuel.
- Solar Energy is better for the environment than traditional forms of energy.
- Solar energy has many uses such as electricity production and heating of water through photovoltaic cells and directly for drying clothes.
- Solar energy can also be used to heat swimming pools, power cars, for attic fans, calculators and other small appliances. It produces lighting for indoors or outdoors.
- Solar Energy is becoming more and more popular. The worldwide demand for Solar Energy is currently greater than supply.
- Solar Energy is measured in kilowatt-hour. 1 kilowatt = 1000 watts.
- 1 kilowatt-hour (kWh) = the amount of electricity required to burn a 100 watt light bulb for 10 hours.
- A home solar system is typically made up of solar panels, an inverter, a battery, a charge controller, wiring and support structure.
- A 1-kilowatt home solar system consists of about 10-12 solar panels and requires about 100 square feet of installation area.
- A 1 kilowatt home solar system will generate approximately 1,600 kilowatt hours per year in a sunny climate (receiving 5.5 hours of sunshine per day) and approximately 750 kilowatt hours per year in a cloudy climate (receiving 2.5 hours of sunshine per day).
- A 1-kilowatt home solar system will prevent approximately 170 lbs. of coal from being burned, 300 lbs of CO2 from being released into the atmosphere and 105 gallons of water from being consumed each month!
- About 40 solar cells are usually combined into a solar panel and around 10-12 panels mounted in an array facing due North to receive maximum sunlight.
- The system usually comes with a 5-year warranty, although the solar panels are warranted for 20.
- Relying on the battery backup, a solar energy system can provide electricity 24×7, even on cloudy days and at night.
- Solar panels come in various colors.
- Solar energy can be collected and stored in batteries, reflected, insulated, absorbed and transmitted.
- The solar module (also called a “solar panel”) it accounts for between 40-50% of the total cost of an installed solar energy system.
- A typical silicon cell Solar Module will have a life in excess of 20 years. It’s electric generating capacity may degradation gradually between 0-20% over its useful life.
- A typical high power solar module generates 100 Watts and measures about 2 feet by 4 feet.
- Solar energy is responsible for weather patterns and ocean currents.
- Fossil fuels – oil, coal and gas – provide the world with most of its energy. But burning these fossil fuels is the primary source of carbon dioxide emissions, which cause global warming. It has been estimated that fossil fuel reserves may last for only another 40 or 50 years. Finding alternative sources of energy is therefore a matter of great urgency.
- An average mountain-dwelling family in Nepal consumes 3 500 kg of wood a year for cooking. Fourteen million tons of wood are burned by Nepalese mountain dwellers every year to meet household energy requirements.
- Mountain regions produce far more hydropower than they use. While Norway has developed more than 80 percent of its hydropower potential, Nepal and Ethiopia have developed less than 1 percent of theirs.
- Canada is the largest producer of hydropower in the world. The Colombia River basin has 13 dams.
- Large hydropower installations have their drawbacks. More than 20 percent of freshwater fish species around the world are considered endangered as a result of dams.
- In 1995, the cost of electricity generated from gas and coal was between 3 and 4 US cents per kilowatt-hour, nuclear power cost 10 to 14 cents, wind power was 5 to 7 cents and solar photovoltaic power was 25 to 40 cents. But the price gap between non-renewable and renewable energy is closing. By 2030, wind, solar and biomass power may cost less than fossil or nuclear fuels.
Hydropower Figures in Nepal:
Energy balance for Nepal GJ. 1981-1998
Basin-wise Hydropower potential in Nepal
|Basin||Theoretical Potential (GW)||Economic Potential (GW)|
|Major rivers||Small rivers||Total|
|Karnali and Mahakali||32||3||35||25|
Economical Hydropower potential in Nepal.
|River basin||Number of projects||Capacity, GW||B/C ratio range|
|Sapta-Koshi||40||10.86||4.10 – 1.20|
|Sapta-Gandaki||12||5.27||1.96 – 1.03|
|Karnali||7||24.00||Up to 4|
|Mahakali *||2||1.125||U Known|
|Southern rivers||5||0.878||Up to 2|
* Half, being a border river.
Major hydropower generating stations in Nepal
|Basin||Name||Year (Commissioned)||Capacity (MW)||Energy (GWH)|
Technical Hydropower potential in Nepal.
|River basin||Number of project sites||Capacity, GW||Capacity factor|
|Karnali||30||25.41||20% or more|
|Mahakali*||4||1.16||Up to 60%|
Theoretical Hydropower Potential in Nepal.
|River basin||Potential concentrated in river courses, GW||Total|
|Major rivers||Minor rivers|
|Karnali and Mahakali||32.68||3.50||36.18|