California currently pumps water from North to South and from East to West and the energy requirements to pump this water is approximately 25% of the State’s entire energy use. The 10 largest California aqueducts have significant water loss due to evaporation and seepage and this creates an economic burden on the State of California. The existing aqueduct system has the potential to do more than just transfer water from one location to another.
We propose the following:
- Cover the existing open air sections of the 10 largest California aqueducts with photovoltaic panels to generate electricity and reduce evaporation.
- We estimate that with current technology the surface area of the aqueducts can generate over 6.53 Gigawatts of electricity.
- Use the electricity generated to offset the costs of pumping water around the state and/or feed into the state’s electrical grid to power nearby cities and towns with renewable power.
- Reduce the amount of evaporation and thus conserving a vital statewide resource.
- If we conserve water at this scale, we can minimize the need for a Peripheral Canal in the Sacramento River Delta area thus preserving sensitive environmental habitat.
- Our existing California aqueduct infrastructure and Right Of Way served multiple uses, conserved a vital resource, generated 100% renewable energy, created opportunities for community empowerment, or powered the “high-speed” rail line with 100% renewable energy.
- We transformed the solar electrical industry by creating the largest solar power plant in the World.
- We created jobs in every county of California that the aqueducts flow through.
- We design a system that can be replicated around the World.