UNIFYING THE VOICES OF HYDROPOWER

World Hydropower Congress 2023: Turning Hydropower Ambition into Action

Only two months for the highly anticipated 2023 World Hydropower Congress, scheduled to take place in Bali from 31 October to 2 November and organised by our partner IHA. With a mission to bridge the gap between climate ambition and actionable solutions, the Congress is expected to bring together more than 1,000 decision makers, innovators, and experts from various sectors including industry, governments, finance, civil society, and academia. This global event promises to deliver not just discussions but tangible outcomes that will shape the future of sustainable hydropower and contribute to the world's clean energy transition.

 

Key topics at the World Hydropower Congress 2023

The 2023 World Hydropower Congress is not merely a forum for dialogue:  As the premier platform for decision-makers both within and beyond the hydropower industry, this year's Congress is thought to yield a multitude of outcomes that will have far-reaching implications. With a focus on advancing the clean energy transition and aligning strategies to the goals of COP28, the Congress aims to establish consensus on policy and finance recommendations that will pave the way for a more sustainable energy landscape. One of its key objectives is to push forward  the growth of renewable energy, through the use of policy-driven and investment-based solutions. By showcasing how diverse renewable technologies can work in tandem to catalyse the transition away from coal, the Congress intends to amplify the call for greener energy alternatives. Additionally, the event seeks to shed light on the untapped potential of hydropower across regions, particularly in Asia and Africa, emphasizing the role of hydropower in shaping the future energy mix.

The Congress will be a platform, boasting over 200 high-level speakers from government bodies, industries, financial institutions, research organizations, and civil society. These speakers will participate in more than 30 sessions around energy matters. Some specific topics to highlight are clean energy security and flexibility, where discussions will revolve around pumped storage hydropower, innovative practices, and the synergy between various renewable sources. Climate-related themes will dive into mitigation, resilience, and adaptation strategies in the face of changing environmental dynamics. The nexus between water, energy, and food will also be tackled, with an emphasis on the multifaceted nature of hydropower's role in supporting sustainable development. Sustainability discussions will revolve around best practices and tools, with a particular focus on the Hydropower Sustainability Standard. The Congress will further unravel the intricate relationship between policy and finance, delving into hydropower's integration into net-zero strategies, streamlining licensing procedures, fostering green skills and job creation, financial mechanisms such as green bonds, and effective risk management strategies.

In conclusion, the World Hydropower Congress 2023 is expected to be a global speaker in the push for cleaner and more sustainable energy sources. With its emphasis on translating climate ambitions into tangible actions, this event is set to foster international cooperation, innovation, and actionable strategies. As world leaders, experts, and decision-makers convene in Bali, the Congress is anticipated to generate a series of discussions that could lead to policy recommendations, commitments, and groundbreaking insights that will propel the hydropower industry and its renewable counterparts toward a greener, more sustainable future. Stay tuned for updates as this transformative event unfolds at the end of October!

 

More information and registration: https://www.worldhydropowercongress.org/

 

IHA Banner WHC 2023

Hydropower's Quest for Resilience to fight climate change

The recent failure of the Nova Kakhovka dam in Ukraine highlights the challenges faced by hydroelectric dams worldwide in 2023 due to extreme weather conditions. While the Kakhovka dam experienced historically high water levels, many other hydro facilities have suffered from depleted water levels, limiting their electricity generation potential. This has led to a decline in hydro-powered electricity generation in Asia, Europe, and North America compared to the same period in 2022.

Key hydro producers such as China, the United States, India, Vietnam, and Turkey have witnessed output falls, contributing to a global decrease of nearly 4% in hydroelectricity generation during the opening quarter of 2023, as reported by Ember. The upcoming summer season may exacerbate the situation, with hot and dry conditions expected to further reduce hydro power production potential, adding strain to global power grids already struggling to meet rising demands.

Notably, major hydro producers like Norway, Sweden, France, Turkey, and Italy have collectively experienced an 8% decline in hydro output during the first quarter of 2023 compared to the previous year. While Turkey has been heavily impacted by an extended drought, Switzerland and Austria have recorded higher output levels compared to the previous year. These fluctuations in hydroelectricity generation pose challenges for ensuring a stable and reliable energy supply in affected regions.

Hydropower faces significant challenges when confronted with extreme weather conditions and drought. High water levels, as seen in the case of the Nova Kakhovka dam failure in Ukraine, can strain infrastructure and lead to breaches. On the other hand, droughts and depleted water levels reduce the capacity for hydroelectric dams to generate electricity, impacting their output and reliability. With hot and dry conditions becoming more prevalent due to climate change, the risk of reduced hydro power production increases, exacerbating the strain on global power grids and necessitating the need for diversification and resilience in the energy sector.

Complete information by Reuters HERE

 

Hydropower: Tapping into centuries of potential energy generation

Hydropower has a rich history dating back centuries, with Greeks using waterwheels to grind wheat. Today, we continue to harness the power of moving water to generate electricity, albeit with upgraded systems. Hydropower is considered "firm, dispatchable, clean electricity" as it produces minimal air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, although damming rivers does have some environmental impacts. However, hydropower acts as a reliable water battery, providing electricity whenever needed, complementing other intermittent renewable sources like wind and solar.

The changing climate directly affects hydropower due to shifts in rainfall patterns. Water is not just important for cooling fossil fuel and nuclear power plants; it is the fuel for hydropower. Without an adequate water supply, the generation of hydropower becomes challenging. Nonetheless, there are exciting innovations and investments in harnessing energy from oceans through tidal and wave power. Additionally, advancements in pumped storage technology, such as utilizing abandoned mines as reservoirs, offer new possibilities for storing and releasing water to generate electricity.

As we explore these diverse ways to utilize water resources, both on land and in the oceans, hydropower continues to evolve and adapt. The ongoing development of innovative technologies and alternative approaches ensures that hydropower remains a significant contributor to our clean energy transition and helps us meet the challenges posed by a changing climate.

Read the complete news by Brightly: Watt’s Up With Hydropower? How We Can Harness Nature’s Energy Source for a Greener Future - Brightly 

 

REPowerEU: one year after the launch

One year after the launch of the REPowerEU plan, the European Union (EU) remains steadfast in its commitment to promoting clean energy production and conservation. The EU aims to enhance energy supply diversification to prevent shortages while expediting a just and sustainable transition towards clean energy.

To monitor the progress of the REPowerEU plan and ensure economic stability and sustainable development  across member countries, the Commission has gathered data and released a comprehensive set of 28 factsheets, one for each EU country and one encompassing the entire EU last 24 May 2023. The factsheets are organized around seven key themes, including energy figures, energy-saving measures, diversification initiatives, the EU Energy Platform, clean energy acceleration, energy price trends, and the Recovery and Resilience Facility with its REPowerEU chapters.

See the complete information and access the factsheets on the official page of the European Commission: REPowerEU - one year on (europa.eu) 

 

REPOWER EU

Source: EUR-LEX on REPowerEU Plan - COM(2022) 230 final

NREL's Emulation Platform Unleashes Potential for Clean Energy Grid Integration

Hydropower plants are large and expensive, making it difficult to customize and test their designs. In contrast, wind and solar energy technologies are easier to model, perfect, and deploy. To address this challenge, researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have developed a Real-Time Hydropower Emulation Platform. This platform utilizes field data, mathematical models, and hardware to recreate hydropower plants in a virtual laboratory setting. It enables users to study how different plant designs would operate in the real world and in real time, providing a cost-effective and low-risk way to test new hydropower technologies and grid configurations.

The development of this emulation platform is particularly crucial for the clean energy power grid transition. Hydropower's reliable and flexible energy, along with its storage capabilities, will play a significant role in maintaining grid stability. While the integration of solar and wind energy into the grid has been extensively studied, the potential of hydropower in supporting a clean energy grid is not well understood. By using power electronics to enhance control over energy output, hydropower plants can swiftly respond to both cyber and natural threats, further increasing their value in a future clean energy system.

Read the complete news by energypost.eu: https://energypost.eu/hydropowers-full-potential-emulator-optimises-designs-and-operations-in-real-time/ 
 

Hydropower Emulation Platform, NREL - TaraSmithIllustration Hydropower Emulation Model. Credit: Tara Smith, NREL
 

 

IHA Hydropower Outlook 2023: Global Growth and the Path to Net-Zero

According to the International Hydropower Association (IHA), hydropower accounted for 15% of the world's electricity generation last year. China led the sector's growth with a substantial increase of 24GW in capacity, marking the first time since 2016 that over 30GW of new capacity was built in a single year. Meanwhile, Switzerland, Portugal, and Turkey spearheaded significant projects in Europe, with Norway, Austria, and Italy also making notable contributions.

Despite the progress observed in the sector, the IHA's World Hydropower Outlook highlights that an additional 700GW of hydropower capacity is required to remain on track for achieving global net-zero emissions by 2050. In terms of investment, the report emphasizes the need for an annual funding of $100 billion to support the realization of net-zero goals, which is currently only half of the required amount.

Eddie Rich, CEO of the IHA, emphasizes the importance of incentivizing sustainable hydropower development through financial and market mechanisms, streamlining permitting and licensing processes for renewable projects, and implementing regulatory practices that prioritize hydropower sustainability. The Outlook provides a realistic roadmap to leverage hydropower and other renewables in meeting net-zero targets, urging governments to consider the recommendations presented to drive the development of sustainable hydropower and accelerate progress towards global climate goals.

Read more on the IHA Hydropower Outlook 2023.

 

ETIP HYDROPOWER GENERAL ASSEMBLY INFORMATION SESSION TO BE HELD ON THE 27TH OF JUNE 2023

ETIP HYDROPOWER is pleased to announce that a General Assembly Information Session will be held online on the 27th of June 2023 starting at 9:35- 11:30 AM. The assembly aims to explain the ETIP HYDROPOWER governance structure and the steps that will be implemented in the coming months for participation in the ETIP process.  

We invite you to join this session to learn more about:

    •  How to register as a member of the General Assembly (open to everyone.),
    • How to stand as a candidate for the Governing Board,
    •  How to participate in the election process,
    • How the ETIP HYDROPOWER working groups will be established. 

 

Please REGISTER to attend ETIP HYDROPOWER General Assembly Information Session 

Download the agenda of the General Assembly Information Session 

 

    • If you are already a member of the Hydropower Consultation Platform, please login to automatically use your registration information - Login to CP Account
    • If you are not a member of the Hydropower Consultation Platform and would like to participate in this and future ETIP HYDROPOWER events, please register here.
    • If you would simply like to join the General Assembly Information Session, please register here

 

CONFERENCE: River Management and ecology organised by vgbe Energy

The joint Expert Event of vgbe energy and VÖU will bring together experts from policy, authorities, leading operators, manufacturers and suppliers, scientists, NGOs as well as further relevant stakeholders to discuss crucial issues in the fields of river management, restoration and ecology. 

Rivers are biodiversity hotspots and provide water for domestic supply, irrigation, power generation, navigation and industry as well as a range of other ecosystem services. Managing rivers to provide multiple benefits is therefore essential to water security and multiple other policy priorities. Specifically, environmental protection and nature preservation, as well as restoration, are key challenges not only for hydropower operators and industries but also for society as a whole. Being among the most environmentally and climate-friendly forms of energy generation, hydropower plays a crucial role in the energy system of today and the future. Operation and maintenance of existing plants as well as new projects can only be realized by pursuing a holistic approach, i.e. by balancing ecological, social and economic aspects and promoting sustainable use of water.

More information and registration HERE.

vgbe event - River Restoration - Vienna

REPORT: Managing Seasonal and Interanual Variability of Renewables (IEA)

As countries strive to enhance energy security, meet emission reduction goals, and capitalize on cost-effective electricity sources, renewable energy is experiencing rapid growth in global electricity systems. The successful utilization of flexibility resources, such as robust grids, interconnections, demand-side measures, affordable storage, and dispatchable power supply, has enabled many countries to effectively and securely integrate significant shares of variable renewables (VRE) into their power generation. However, as wind and solar power continue to expand their contribution, seasonal variations in system-level surpluses and lower generation will extend beyond daily or hourly fluctuations.

To address the seasonal variability of renewables, flexibility resources will be essential throughout the year, even on a week-to-week or month-to-month basis. This study coordinated by the International Energy Agency (IEA), examines the integration of VRE beyond a 70% share of annual generation in future power systems, focusing on four distinct climatic regions: temperate with hot summers, tropical, cold arid, and continental with warm summers. The study affirms that a diverse mix of flexibility resources is required to manage variability across all timescales and seasons. Specifically, systems with a high proportion of VRE necessitate seasonal flexibility services, which can be supplied by existing thermal power capacities and hydropower plants. Ultimately, as energy systems transition toward achieving net-zero emissions, all flexibility services will need to be fully decarbonized.