chapter  4
A Geographic Information System (GIS) Based Assessment of Hydropower Potential within the Upper Indus Basin Pakistan
Pages 12

Keywords: Geographic Information system, Hydropower potential, Inverse Distance Weighting, Digital Elevation Model.

 INTRODUCTION Power derived from the potential and kinetic energy of falling and running water i.e. hydropower, has long been used as a renewable source of energy. Hydropower is one of the oldest methods of producing power. The energy from moving water is used to run the turbines connected to a generator in turn generating electricity, more commonly known as hydroelectricity. Today, hydropower is one of the mostly widely-used renewable resources as 15% of the total power being produced comes from hydropower. A survey of the world energy resources shows that hydropower production is on the rise as 2,286 TWH of hydropower was generated in 1993 which increased to 3229 by the year 2011, which is expected to increase to 3,826 by the year 2020. Nonetheless, a large demand for energy is still met by burning fossil fuels such as coal, oil, natural gas etc. But due to the serious environmental hazards associated with these sources and the depleting fossil fuel reserves, these sources cannot be relied upon as a sustainable source of energy. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (2012), electricity generation factors contributed 32% in total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the year 2012, over 70% of which comes from the burning of fossil fuels, mostly coal and natural gas. Due to these adverse effects, the world today is moving towards the development of more sustainable and eco-friendly energy sources, of which hydroelectric power is one.