Moving water is a powerful entity responsible for lighting entire cities, even countries. Thousands of years ago the Greeks used water wheels, which picked up water in buckets around a wheel. The water’s weight caused the wheel to turn, converting kinetic energy into mechanical energy for grinding grain and pumping water In the 1800s the water wheel was often used to power machines such as timber-cutting saws in European and American factories. More importantly, people realized that the force of water falling from a height would turn a turbine connected to a generator to produce electricity. The Niagara Falls, a natural waterfall powered the first hydroelectric plant in 1879.
The energy potential of moving water has been harnessed for thousands of years, originally using water wheels to drive mills and machinery. Hydropower currently produces 2% of the our plants electricity needs. Whilst most of this comes from large dam projects installed many years ago, there is still an untapped large Hydropower potential in certain parts of the World.