Hydropower was the original clean, renewable energy source. It remains vitally important today. But we have a big problem—the time, cost, and uncertainty involved in licensing and relicensing hydropower facilities.
A dam presents an obstacle to migrating fish. Early hydropower developers were notoriously insensitive to environmental issues. That was not the case when the Baker River in Washington State was dammed in 1924-25. The dam’s 293-foot height presented a problem. Fish never had been lifted over an obstruction more than 50 feet high.