By Sejal Patel and Neha Rai, IIED
Tuesday 2nd June 2020

In this presentation, we discuss the role of climate financiers in supporting hydropower, and look at why hydropower project developers should be interested in the benefits of accessing climate finance.

Hydropower dams play a key role in a transition to low-carbon climate-resilient future. They can provide a number of ancillary services and these hold large underutilised value for the transition. Key amongst these ancillary services are the ability to provide stability to grid systems and the ability to store energy, both of which enable larger proportions of intermittent renewable energies on a grid network. Climate finance is one important source of funding that can support a shift in dam design, operations, and broader socio-economies policies needed to highlight these hitherto undervalued services that can contribute to the needed transformation in energy and water systems.

Examples of projects that are utilising ancillary services well are the Tina River Hydropower Development Project in the Solomon Islands and Morocco’s ONE Wind Energy Plan project (approved in 2017 and 2011, respectively). The Solomon Islands project aims to provide reservoir capacity to enable a higher penetration of photovoltaic (PV) power on the grid without the need for large and expensive energy storage or diesel generators. Morocco’s ONE Wind Energy plan integrates a hydro storage facility into an existing dam to provide energy storage for the several wind energy farms that are being constructed under the plan, aiding grid stability. These cases begin to show the potential that hydropower dams provide in grid systems, and for water and energy futures.

The slides from this webinar are available on request.

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Image by Deni Williams on Flickr [CC-BY 2.0]

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