At the end of 2016 we can look back on a year of progress for hydropower, with many development landmarks achieved around the world. We have compiled some of the most notable achievements by IHA member companies this year.
China Three Gorges Corporation: Xiluodu project wins FIDIC award
In September, the Xiluodu hydropower project was recognised with an Outstanding Project of the Year Award by the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC). Xiluodu, developed by China Three Gorges Corporation, is the world's third-largest hydropower station, with an installed capacity of 13,860 MW. The award was presented at the FIDIC awards gala dinner in Morocco. You can read the full list of winners here.
Ecofish Research: study finds increase in overall fish abundance at run-of-river projects
During 2016, scientists at Ecofish Research Ltd. found that there was an overall increase in fish abundance in the diversion reaches of six run-of-river hydroelectric projects (Kwalsa-Stave projects) owned by Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. in southwestern British Columbia, Canada; a result supported by an independent review of the report by the Canadian Science Advisory Secretariat.
Engie: 3,750 MW Jirau project inaugurated in Brazil
On 16 December 2016, Engie inaugurated the Jirau hydropower project, located on the Madeira River in the State of Rondônia, Brazil. At 3,750 MW, the project is the Engie Group's largest in the world, and will provide the equivalent consumption of more than 10 million homes. The project is certified by the United Nations according to the Clean Development Mechanism, and will reduce 6 million tons of CO2 emissions ervery year.
Eskom: 1,332 MW Ingula pumped storage scheme comes online in South Africa
Eskom's Ingula pumped storage scheme came into commercial operation in 2016. The first of four units came online in June, with two more units following in August. In October, the project won two awards at the Annual South African Institute of Civil Engineering (SAICE) & South African Forum of Civil Engineering Contractors (SAFCEC) awards. At the project site, Eskom is actively taking steps to conserve the environment for future generations. You can read more here.
Hydro-Québec: record net exports of clean energy
For its third quarter of 2016, Hydro-Québec Production recorded net exports of 9.8 TWh of clean energy on markets outside Québec, a historic quarterly high and a 1.4-TWh increase compared to the previous record, set in the third quarter of 2015. Last year, over 7 million t CO2 eq. emissions were avoided through the company's electricity sales outside Québec, the equivalent of 1.85 million cars on the road during a year.
Hydro Tasmania: Waddamana power station celebrates centenary
In May, Hydro Tasmania’s first ever power station at Waddamana turned 100 years old, inspiring great pride and nostalgia about its role in the industrialisation of Tasmania. The station produced power from 1916 until 1994, and today has a new life as a museum displaying original equipment. You can find out more about the project here.
MWH Global, now part of Stantec: four projects reach commercial operation on Ohio River
Four new hydropower plants – Cannelton, Willow Island, Meldahl and Smithland – are now producing power along the Ohio River, representing the potential for renewable energy solutions in the United States. The Cannelton project is pictured. MWH Global, now part of Stantec, provided the feasibility review, licensing, design and construction of the four projects, which are using existing dams and turning them into clean, run-of-river hydroelectric generation. You can find out more here.
Neoenergia: go-ahead for full startup of 1,820 MW Teles Pires project
In August, the Brazilian power regulator Aneel gave approval for the 1,820 MW Teles Pires hydropower project to go into full commercial operation. The project's first unit started producing power in November 2015, and transmission lines linking the project to Brazil's national grid were completed in 2016. The project was developed by a consortium of Neoenergia (50.1 per cent), Eletrobras-Eletrosul (24.5 per cent), Eletrobras Furnas (24.5 per cent) and Odebrecht (0.9 per cent). You can find out more here.
Norconsult: paperless Vamma 12 project wins international BIM award
Norconsult’s paperless hydropower project, Vamma 12, was recognised with an international BIM award at the AEC Excellence Awards in November. The project, which is currently under construction in Østfold, Norway, is being implemented based on BIM (Building Information Modelling). Rather than delivering drawings to the construction site, updated digital models are sent electronically. You can find out more here. Photo credit: Hafslund and Norconsult.
Pöyry: concrete works implemented at Upper Kaleköy dam, spillway and powerhouse in Turkey
In December, the main concrete works of the Upper Kaleköy dam, Turkey, as well as the spillway and powerhouse, were successfully completed. Pöyry provided full scope of detail design services for civil works, and coordination services for HEM equipment.
Renewable Energy Holdings: 4.5 MW Stortemelk project commissioned in South Africa
In August, the 4.5 MW Stortemelk hydropower project, developed by Renewable Energy Holdings on the Ash River in South Africa, begun commercial operations. The project was recognised by South Africa's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer (REIPP) procurement programme. You can find out more here.
Sarawak Energy: state government approves 1,285 MW Baleh project
In September, the Sarawak state government formally approved the construction of Sarawak Energy's 1,285 MW Baleh hydroelectric project. The go-ahead follows the approval of the project's social and enviromental impact assessment report last year. The construction phase of the project is projected to create about 3,500 job opportunities, and is expected to be completed in 2025. You can find out more here.
SNC Lavalin: Jimmie Creek project wins Clean Energy BC's Project Excellence Award
SNC Lavalin completed construction of the Jimmie Creek hydroelectric project in British Columbia, Canada, in June 2016 safely, ahead of schedule and under budget. The project, which is now producing its full capacity output of 62 MW, was recognised with an excellence award at the Clean Energy BC Awards in November. You can see some videos on the project, including a construction time lapse, here.
Statkraft: Nedre Røssåga opens after renovation and expansion
In October, Statkraft opened the Nedre Røssåga hydropower station in Nordland, Norway, after an extensive renovation and expansion, preparing it for another 50 years of renewable energy generation. The project's total capacity has been increased from 250 Mw to 350 MW; it will now produce 2.15 TWh of electricity per year, equivalent to the consumption of more than 100,000 Norwegian households. You can find out more here.
Voith: 88 MW Mount Coffee project resumes operation after extensive modernisation
In December, the 88 MW Mount Coffee hydropower project in Liberia following extensive upgrades. Liberia's president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (pictured) joined 300 international guests to celebrate the opening ceremony. Voith provided new Francis turbines, generators, the control technology and the electrical and mechanical power plant equipment for the project, as well as training power plant operators. The run-of-river plant will supply electricity to more than 1 million people in Liberia. Find out more here.
What are you biggest concerns for 2015? Tell us what is on your radar, and we can continue to shape our work programme around the most important issues for the sector.