When it comes to innovative engineering, it can be hard to imagine why a power plant that results in a net loss of energy makes any sense. In most cases, power plants function to add energy to the grid. However, in a few uncommon cases, they simply function to store energy until it can be used.
There aren’t batteries large enough to hold excess energy from the power grid, so oftentimes it ends up getting wasted. When the excess is mathematically significant, another solution is needed. Engineers sometimes consider building purely pumped hydroelectric storage dams in these rare cases. They essentially act like giant potential energy water batteries. To learn a little bit more about how they work, the video below explains the whole process.