Today, Rep. Grace F. Napolitano (CA-38) helped launch a new effort to inform and educate people on the benefits of a renewable source of power already available across much of the country: hydropower, the production of electricity through the movement of water, including hydroelectric dams that tap the movement of rivers. Napolitano joined the newly-created Congressional Hydropower Caucus to help educate other members of Congress, their staff and others about the many benefits of renewable, clean and emissions-free hydropower. Napolitano co-chairs the Hydropower Caucus with Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-CA), Rep. Jim Costa (D-CA) and Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE).
"Hydropower is an important piece of the puzzle to achieving energy independence and addressing global climate change," said Rep. Napolitano, adding, "Hydropower is not just dams, it is also about emerging technologies, like "wave-energy" that generates power by the movement of the ocean. There is so much potential for clean energy, but we need to harness our collective brain power and combine our efforts to utilize new and existing technologies to the fullest potential."
In addition to education, the goals of the Congressional Hydropower Caucus include:
* Advocating for pump storage and low-head hydro (on canals and pipelines) , where feasible, and emerging technologies such as, ocean wave, tidal and hydro-kinetic hydropower;
* Recognizing the value that hydropower provides as a firming resource for intermittent renewable electricity generation, including wind and solar;
* Promoting hydropower as a clean, renewable, emissions-free and relatively low-cost electricity generation resource, especially in the context of energy supply, electric reliability and global climate change legislation and research;
* Protecting current conventional hydropower generation facilities and promote conventional hydropower expansion, where appropriate;
* Hold informational briefings and other activities to facilitate greater awareness of hydropower.
Rep. Napolitano is chair of the House Water and Power Subcommittee and a leading voice on water issues.