When we think of Norway, what might come to mind are Vikings, a Nordic climate, and scenic nature. Yet as the fourth happiest country with the third most effective government in the world (2016 Country RepTrak), its reputation is rising as a leader in the social and environmental scheme.

The same Scandinavian country that brought us ABBA is now paving the way for the world when it comes to green energy.

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Back in Norway, renewable energy been a strong-point and this new project has moved away from the traditionally massive power stations, to a stunningly sleek alternative. Seated on a riverbed on the edge of a forest in Northern Norway, the Ovre Forsland hydropower plant looks like something out of a fairytale:

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Its structure reflects the stunning nature around it, blending in perfectly with its surroundings. With an architectural design bringing all the right attention, showing the world an example of a country using its offshore wind power potential. And it intends to make green energy look good.

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Hydropower: Green Energy Full of Potential
Coincidentally, hydropower is the largest renewable energy source in the United States; yet most people associate hydropower energy with large dams and huge concrete structures. What many fail to realize is that they can come in all shapes and sizes. Essentially, as long as the plant is near a river or stream, it can take the energy from moving water and captures it as electricity, without the need for large reservoirs.

There are 80 000 dams in the U.S. that aren’t being used to produce electricity.

As the best form of energy storage, hydropower is reliable: rivers keep flowing day and night, and require little storage; whereas wind and solar power are variable, requiring long periods of storage when they are unavailable. Whether it is by harnessing the full potential of our dams, or creating innovative ways to capture hydropower like in Norway, there is a lot of untapped power in the U.S renewable energy sector, just waiting to be tapped.

 

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