Sustainable Living: 3M FuturewiseTown PlanIntroductionGo BackEnd of section: Go to Town view3M

How do HEPs work?

When power stations are generating more electricity than is required (e.g. the middle of the night), electricity that isn't being used in the national grid can be used to pump water uphill into a raised dam to give it gravitational potential energy. The gates can be shut so that water is stored in the dam.

When there is a sudden demand for electricity (e.g. when a popular TV programme has finished), the water in the dam can be allowed to fall through turbines to generate electricity.

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