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Hydro power shows signs of comeback

America’s search for cleaner electricity has developers studying dozens of government flood-control dams from North Carolina to Oregon to see if it makes financial sense to retrofit them with hydroelectric turbines.

The studies are part of a broader trend that has developers looking at everything from millpond dams in New England to locks and dams on navigable waterways such as the Mississippi and Ohio rivers.

Factors ranging from the difficulty in obtaining permits for new coal-fired power plants to government renewable energy mandates and tax credits have created a potential market for new hydroelectric projects.


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