California Drought Expected to Lower Hydro Generation

California is in an extreme drought, threatening the effectiveness of hydropower generation in the state.

Feb 8, 2014 at 12:00PM

This article was written by Oilprice.com -- the leading provider of energy news in the world. Also check out these recent articles:

The record drought in California will cut into the availability of water for hydropower generation in the coming months, according to the Energy Information Administration. Nearly 60% of the state of California is classified to be in a condition of extreme drought, after the driest December ever. In fact, the drought is California's worst on record, and there is evidence that it may be the worst drought in the last 500 years. The governor of California declared a state of emergency, and there are at least 17 rural California communities that are in danger of running out of water within the next two to four months.

Drought is posing a serious challenge to the state, not just for drinking needs and agriculture, but also for electricity generation. Much of California gets its precipitation in winter months, and as melting snowpack in spring and summer slowly releases water, it is used to generate electricity at hydropower stations. However, the snowpack in the Sierra Nevada Mountains are at only 12% of their normal levels. Unless the state gets rain, the problem will only grow worse as electricity demand rises with warmer weather. At the same time, rain becomes less likely in the summer months, and without having collected water during what is supposed to be the wet months, the drought could reach a real crisis point this summer.

This also means that California's hydro generation in the coming months will be lower than usual. The share of electricity from hydro varies from year to year in California, but it ranges from 11%-28% of the state's total. A dry year will require California to import electricity from neighboring states. Much of that imported power will also come in the form of hydrogenation, but from the Pacific Northwest. The problem is that, according to EIA, Oregon and Washington are also experiencing lower levels of precipitation.

America's energy boom is far from over
Record oil and natural gas production is revolutionizing the United States' energy position. Finding the right plays while historic amounts of capital expenditures are flooding the industry will pad your investment nest egg. For this reason, the Motley Fool is offering a comprehensive look at three energy companies set to soar during this transformation in the energy industry. To find out which three companies are spreading their wings, check out the special free report, "3 Stocks for the American Energy Bonanza." Don't miss out on this timely opportunity; click here to access your report -- it's absolutely free.

Written by Charles Kennedy at Oilprice.com.

Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Money to your ears - A great FREE investing resource for you

The best way to get your regular dose of market and money insights is our suite of free podcasts ... what we like to think of as “binge-worthy finance.”

Feb 1, 2016 at 5:03PM

Whether we're in the midst of earnings season or riding out the market's lulls, you want to know the best strategies for your money.

And you'll want to go beyond the hype of screaming TV personalities, fear-mongering ads, and "analysis" from people who might have your email address ... but no track record of success.

In short, you want a voice of reason you can count on.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich," rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

And one of the easiest, most enjoyable, most valuable ways to get your regular dose of market and money insights is our suite of free podcasts ... what we like to think of as "binge-worthy finance."

Whether you make it part of your daily commute or you save up and listen to a handful of episodes for your 50-mile bike rides or long soaks in a bubble bath (or both!), the podcasts make sense of your money.

And unlike so many who want to make the subjects of personal finance and investing complicated and scary, our podcasts are clear, insightful, and (yes, it's true) fun.

Our free suite of podcasts

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. The show is also heard weekly on dozens of radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers are timeless, so it's worth going back to and listening from the very start; the other three are focused more on today's events, so listen to the most recent first.

All are available for free at www.fool.com/podcasts.

If you're looking for a friendly voice ... with great advice on how to make the most of your money ... from a business with a lengthy track record of success ... in clear, compelling language ... I encourage you to give a listen to our free podcasts.

Head to www.fool.com/podcasts, give them a spin, and you can subscribe there (at iTunes, Stitcher, or our other partners) if you want to receive them regularly.

It's money to your ears.

 


Compare Brokers