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EBR-012-5666 – Cap and Trade Program Design Options

Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Reservoirs

Headponds or reservoirs are crucial to maximizing hydroelectric generation during peak demand hours, and must be factored in to pay the price for any cap or tax on resulting GHG emissions.  The frequent claim by governments and industry that waterpower produces clean energy is understood in most circles to mean that it does not emit Greenhouse Gases (GHGs).  The clean and green reputation of large dams has already been in question, but scientists are now reporting that millions of smaller dams on rivers around the world make an important contribution to total global GHG emissions.

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