Run-of-river encompasses hydroelectric projects that require no dam, reservoir or flooding to generate electricity – the natural flow and elevation of a river are used to create power. A portion of the water from a fast-moving river is diverted into a penstock or pipe that channels it to a turbine then back to the river leaving enough of the existing flow to support environmental values.
Run-of-river projects have a much smaller environmental footprint than traditional reservoir storage hydro projects.
Project developers work closely with local communities and First Nations partners, to thoroughly consider all their environmental, economic, and social concerns.
Run-of-river projects require over 50 permits, licenses, approvals and reviews from over a dozen government agencies before they can be built.