We have enjoyed a busy year in 2014 that has taken our team around the world, connecting members regionally and participating in many sector events. Here are just some of the highlights of our travels.
December: preparing for the first assessment in Africa
In 2014 we entered a partnership with the Swiss Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) to deliver the first use of the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol in Africa, as well as training, capacity-building and strengthened governance. This picture of a local ferry on the White Volta River was taken as we visited Ghana in December to explore project sites.
November: project assessment in Colombia
We have taken significant steps in 2014 in the wide implementation of sustainability assessments, with the total of hydropower projects assessed worldwide reaching 17, and new partnerships established. In November our team of accredited project assessors began work on a project in Colombia with Empresas Públicas de Medellín (EPM). This progress has been marked by our sustainability partnerships initative being shortlisted for an Associations Excellence Award.
October: connecting members in Brazil
In October we visited members in Brazil, Paraguay and Argentina. During our trip we held a membership briefing alongside HydroVision Brazil in São Paulo: here is IHA Vice President Gil Maranhão Neto addressing participants.
September: collaborating with partners at World Water Week
At this year's World Water Week in Stockholm, the theme of 'energy and water' placed hydropower at the centre of the agenda. We participated in a number of seminars, including this one alongside the United Nations University Institute for Integrated Management of Material Fluxes and of Resources (UNU-FLORES) and the Centre for the Environmental Design of Renewables (CEDREN) on hydropower's role in renewable systems. Pictures is CEDREN Director Atle Harby speaking at the seminar.
August: making progress in India
In August, we held a membership briefing alongside the National Conference on Hydropower in India, where our CEO Richard Taylor is pictured speaking. It has been a positive year for hydropower in the country, with a new government taking steps to promote development – read more here. We also began our first sustainability partnership in India earlier in 2014.
July: launching our new website and visual identity
In 2014, we launched our new website and visual identity, after many months of consultation with IHA members and creative review. IHA President Ken Adams (pictured) made the official announcement in his speech at HydroVision International in July, where our video on hydropower generation and potential was shown. Our website has recently been shortlisted for an Associations Excellence Award.
June: the first early-stage assessment
This year has seen the first application of the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol's early stage tool, which enables evaluation of potential sites from a sustainability perspective, identifying broader environmental and social issues along with the more common technical and economic parameters to guide decision-making. The assessment of Project Sava in Croatia got under way in June – one of the project sites is pictured.
May: visiting IWHR in Beijing
Exactly a year before the arrival of the 2015 World Hydropower Congress in Beijing, the IHA Board met in China's flourishing capital city as preparations gathered pace. During the trip, Board members visited the China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research (IWHR) – they are pictured here inside the computer monitoring centre.
April: building knowledge on greenhouse gases
Our work alongside UNESCO and a wide scientific group to build a better understanding of greenhouse gas emissions from reservoirs has moved into a new stage. In April, we joined specialists from around the world to begin the production of guidelines, at a workshop hosted by IEA Hydro in Knoxville, USA. Later, in September we participated in a further workshop in Trondheim, Norway, before hosting a workshop at our offices in London in December (pictured) to develop a screening tool, expected to be launched at the 2015 World Hydropower Congress in Beijing.
March: renewing collaboration in China
In March, we announced that we had extended our collaboration with the China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research (IWHR) by renewing our co-operation agreement. The agreement lays out plans for mutually beneficial work in the next two years, and the continuation of the IHA China office, which is hosted by the institute. Our CEO Richard Taylor is pictured with IWHR President Kuang Shangfu.
February: shaping hydropower's role in Africa's vision
We joined with African and European political and business leaders met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in February as bold plans were outlined for Africa’s energy future, with hydropower at the forefront. Leaders involved in the Africa–EU Energy Partnership (AEEP) are pictured at the meeting.
January: representing the sector at the UN Water Conference
The 2014 UN-Water Annual Zaragoza Conference in Spain explored ways in which industry partnerships can ensure water and energy efficiency and sustainability. We respresented the hydropower sector at the event, with Simon Howard, one of our sustainability specialists, speaking at a panel discussion.
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.