The 2017 World Hydropower Congress closed on Thursday 11 May with strong commitments from multiple stakeholders towards delivering better hydro. Here are some of the most notable moments from the final day.
New collection of case studies on sustainable hydropower development unveiled
Better Hydro: Compendium of Case Studies 2017 was officially launched at the closing day of the congress, presenting examples of excellence in specific aspects of sustainable hydropower development. Some of the key people involved in the project are pictured (left to right): Aida Khalil, senior sustainability specialist at IHA; Kimberly Lyon, water resources management analyst at the World Bank Group; Doug Smith; independent consultant; and Cameron Ironside, sustainability director at IHA. You can download the full publication here.
The congress venue: United Nations Conference Center, Addis Ababa
The official venue for the 2017 World Hydropower Congress was the United Nations Conference Center, in Addis Ababa. Delegates gathered in the sunshine at the UN compound for the closing day.
A hydropower project built by the Benedictine Sisters of St Agnes
Sister Yoela Luambano is director of the Tulila hydropower project, constructed by the Benedictine Sisters of St. Agnes in Tanzania. The project supplies power to rural areas in the vicinity of the plant, and delivers important benefits to the local community. Sister Luambano told the project's story to delegates in a session on small-scale energy systems at the congress. A case study of the initiative is featured in Better Hydro: Compendium of Case Studies 2017, which you can download here.
“Isn’t hydropower just the hottest thing in Iceland?”
Ragna Árnadóttir is deputy CEO of Landsvirkjun, the National Power Company of Iceland. Speaking in a session on the benefits of hydropower, she described how hydropower has significantly contributed to Iceland's journey from a poor nation a century ago to one that has a very high standard of living today. Describing the challenges in communicating the benefits, she said: "We have not been able to map out benefits, especially for younger generations, to understand the importance of hydro." Earlier in the week, Landsvirkjun's Blanda hydropower project was awarded the IHA Blue Planet Prize. Watch a short documentary video about the project here.
Bringing together the Francophone hydropower community
The 2017 World Hydropower Congress provided an opportunity to bring together hydropower professionals from Francophone countries to share knowledge and experiences. Christine Cantin, senior advisor at Hydro-Québec and IHA Board member spoke in a special lunchtime session co-convened by the Francophone Institute for Sustainable Development. The 2017 World Hydropower Congress Handbook is available to download in French here.
Archana Agrawal addresses the closing session
Archana Agrawal, joint secretary, Indian Ministry of Power, led the closing session of the congress with a speech describing the “great and ambitious plans for Africa, the rising giant for hydropower” presented at the congress. She said it would be “a great thing” to witness the sustainable energy transformation of the continent.
Organisations unite with commitments to better hydro
The congress concluded with a series of commitments to better hydro, delivered by a broad range of organisations and institutions that participated in Addis Ababa. You can read about the commitments announced here.
Developing "the right projects, in the right place, in the right way"
The Nature Conservancy was represented by its programme director for Gabon, Marie-Claire Paiz, who described the organisation’s commitment as a “partner to identify and test solutions to clean energy and maintaining healthy rivers”. She reiterated the principle of developing “the right projects, in the right place, in the right way” and described the new tools and approaches being designed to reduce the environmental, social and financial risks at the early stages of hydropower development.
2019 World Hydropower Congress to be hosted in France
In his closing speech at the United Nations Conference Center, IHA president Ken Adams announced that the 2019 World Hydropower Congress will be hosted in France. He said: “We cannot wait to see you in France in two years so we can continue our journey together.” China Three Gorges Corporation, EDF and GE Renewable Energy have all made commitments to supporting the 2019 World Hydropower Congress.
Closing dinner concludes the 2017 World Hydropower Congress
After the congress officially closed, delegates gathered at the New Intercontinental in Addis Ababa to celebrate at the closing dinner.
The 2017 World Hydropower Congress is took place in Addis Ababa on 9–11 May 2017. Find out more here.