Conventional Hydro Plants
Conventional hydroelectric plants harness the energy produced by flowing water, using simple mechanics to convert the energy into electricity. Water falling from an elevated reservoir drives turbines to generate electricity. Because it uses water as a fuel source, hydroelectricity is inexpensive and environmentally friendly to produce. However, the amount of power that can be created by hydroelectricity is limited by the volume of water held by the dam in storage.
Duke Energy began its operations in the Carolinas as a hydroelectric company. As the population and industry grew, water power alone could no longer supply all the electricity needed. Today, our hydroelectric plants provide a small but important part of electricity in the Carolinas – mainly during short periods when power use is high, such as hot summer days and cold winter nights. The electricity produced by hydroelectric plants is available to meet customer demand within a few minutes.