International News

Promoting hydropower’s role in renewable energy systems
Hydropower is the backbone of the renewable energy mix.

Our annual activity report, Advancing Sustainable Hydropower, reviews our work in 2013 and outlines our vision for the future. A key element of this regards hydropower’s unique role in integrated renewable energy systems.

We previously reported how we have worked with our REN Alliance partners at COP19 to promote renewables working together.

In the last year we have also joined the steering committee of REN21 – the renewable energy policy network for the 21st century – marking an increasing collaboration, and we have contributed to the work of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) on policy for renewables worldwide.

Christine Lins, REN21’s executive secretary, acknowledges the crucial role of hydro: “Hydropower is the backbone of the renewable energy mix. When we talk about renewables we don’t specifically talk about one technology, but about a basket of different technologies.

“Hydropower plays a very complementary role to other renewable energy sources.”

Our priorities in moving forward with this work are centred upon building understanding among investors, regulators, energy generators, agencies and commentators on hydropower’s unique role in integrated renewable energy systems.

Hydropower has a central role to play in the grid of the future that will often be more based upon variable output renewable energy generation – especially wind and solar. Hydropower can act as a frequency regulator and energy store, and deliver a range of other ‘ancilliary’ benefits.

We will look to further our collaboration with key partners like REN21, IRENA and the REN Alliance to promote and develop an understanding of how the technologies can integrate. We also look forward to representing the hydropower sector at the 2015 International Renewable Energy Conference in South Africa.


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