Clean technology has taken many shapes today, but one up-and-coming shape is that of a tube—more specifically, a water pipeline. Producing clean energy from the inside part of a pipeline is being heralded as the latest way to help the environment. It’s the premise of a new hydropower technology called the LucidPipe Power System, and it’s providing a more renewable energy source for locales as well as a smart financial opportunity for investors.
This is how the Lucid Energy system works: Turbines positioned inside a pipe use water flows that are gravity-fed to produce electricity. This technology is unique in that it is hydropower but fortunately doesn’t negatively impact the environment. Hydropower dams have traditionally been viewed as benefiting the earth by generating clean energy but also potentially injuring aquatic life due to their use of turbine blades.
In Portland, Oregon, which is trying out LucidPipe, four turbines are currently producing electricity through a water pipeline and selling this energy to the city’s utility under a power purchase agreement slated to last 20 years. This particular project is expected to serve nearly 150 residences, with the revenues being shared with the city’s water bureau. After two decades, the water agency will rightfully own the system along with all of the energy produced from it.
First installed in California and Texas, the groundbreaking in-pipe hydropower system has the potential to generate 100 kilowatts of power. It is essentially unlocking the flow of reliable, clean electricity that will make it possible for more people in the United States and throughout the world to enjoy safe drinking water at reduced costs in the decades ahead.