hy·​dro·​elec·​tric | \ ˌhī-drō-i-ˈlek-trik How to pronounce hydroelectric (audio) \

Definition of hydroelectric

: of or relating to production of electricity by waterpower constructed a hydroelectric power plant at the dam site

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Other Words from hydroelectric

hydroelectrically \ ˌhī-​drō-​i-​ˈlek-​tri-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce hydroelectric (audio) \ adverb
hydroelectricity \ ˌhī-​drō-​i-​ˌlek-​ˈtri-​sə-​tē How to pronounce hydroelectric (audio) , -​ˈtri-​stē \ noun

Did You Know?

The prime component of most hydroelectric systems is a dam. A high dam funnels water downward at high pressure to spin turbines, which in turn drive generators to produce high-voltage electricity. Mountainous countries with rushing rivers can produce the most hydroelectricity. Though hydroelectricity comes from a clean and completely renewable energy source, dams disrupt natural systems in a way that disturbs environmentalists.

Examples of hydroelectric in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Although the hydroelectric power of the 77-foot Great Falls once aided the manufacture of silk garments, textiles, and steam locomotives, the city later suffered such financial problems that the state had to take over the school district. Dan Schlossberg, Forbes, "Historic Hinchliffe Stadium, Where Larry Doby Started, Due For Facelift," 5 Apr. 2021 That’s why so much of the world’s cryptocurrency mining is tied to low-cost coal and hydroelectric plants in Asia. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, "The pandemic is turning fracking companies into Bitcoin miners," 29 Mar. 2021 In Japan, experts maintain that the country’s small size, high density, and mountainous geography make building renewable energy infrastructure, like large hydroelectric plants, difficult, especially in a short time frame. Eric Margolis, The New Republic, "The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Put Japan’s Climate Policy in a Decade-Long Purgatory," 17 Nov. 2020 In the 1930s, at the behest of the increasingly powerful farming community, federal engineers created the 82-mile All-American Canal, an aqueduct to irrigate farms across 500,000 acres and to power hydroelectric plants. USA Today, "Worked to death: Latino farmworkers have long been denied basic rights. COVID-19 showed how deadly racism could be.," 22 Oct. 2020 Across the Balkan nations, 1,355 new hydroelectric plants are either under construction or planned. John Wendle, Scientific American, "Europe's Last Wild Rivers Could Soon Drown," 29 June 2016 There, Ali’s father began working for as an electrical engineer for Manitoba Hydro, specifically helping to design hydroelectric dams to generate electricity to nearby towns. Seth Combs Writer, San Diego Union-Tribune, "In ‘Northern Light,’ Kazim Ali moves past nostalgia to tell the real story of his hometown," 14 Mar. 2021 The agency attributed that to the continuing rise of wind and solar power, combined with the steady performance of hydroelectric power. James Bruggers, The Courier-Journal, "Blackjewel’s bankruptcy is a harbinger of trouble ahead for the plummeting coal industry," 3 Mar. 2021 Sacramento power burns no coal, and runs roughly 50 percent carbon-free, thanks in large part to hydroelectric power. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "Get a Heat Pump," 26 Feb. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hydroelectric.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hydroelectric

1884, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hydroelectric

International Scientific Vocabulary

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Time Traveler for hydroelectric

Time Traveler

The first known use of hydroelectric was in 1884

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Statistics for hydroelectric

Last Updated

15 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Hydroelectric.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hydroelectric. Accessed 19 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for hydroelectric



English Language Learners Definition of hydroelectric

technical : of or relating to the production of electricity by using machines that are powered by moving water


hy·​dro·​elec·​tric | \ ˌhī-drō-i-ˈlek-trik How to pronounce hydroelectric (audio) \

Kids Definition of hydroelectric

: relating to or used in the making of electricity by waterpower hydroelectric power

More from Merriam-Webster on hydroelectric

Nglish: Translation of hydroelectric for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hydroelectric for Arabic Speakers

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