When I was a kid, annoyed at the destruction of the environment, I proposed to my elders that instead of building a dam, you could just sink a big turbine into a river and get some electricity that way. The adults explained why this was impossible.
Kids: Ignore the adults. From Wired:
The nation’s first commercial hydrokinetic turbine, which harnesses the power from moving water without the construction of a dam, has splashed into the waters of the Mississippi River near Hastings, Minnesota.
The 35-kilowatt turbine is positioned downstream from an existing hydroelectric-plant dam and — together with another turbine to be installed soon — will increase the capacity of the plant by more than 5 percent. The numbers aren’t big, but the rig’s installation could be the start of an important trend in green energy.
And that could mean more of these “wind turbines for the water” will be generating clean energy soon.