"Hydropower is the answer" to making renewables reliable – Malcolm Turnbull

Malcolm Turnbull, the 29th Prime Minister of Australia, has appealed for public input on the San José Declaration on Sustainable Hydropower as the deadline for feedback approaches.

The Declaration, which sets out an ambitious vision for the hydropower sector’s role in addressing climate change, was subject to a wide-ranging public consultation in July and August 2021. It has now entered a final stage of consultation at the World Hydropower Congress on 7–24 September.

Turnbull made the appeal during an in-depth interview, which you can watch in full here:

“The San José Declaration on Sustainable Hydropower is going to provide the blueprint for the new generation of hydropower, the construction and delivery of which is so critical if we are going to achieve the cut in emissions that we need, and keep global warming within tolerable constraints,” said Turnbull in the interview.

“This is your document”

The International Hydropower Association is facilitating an extensive public consultation to ensure that the San José Declaration reflects the views of a wide range of stakeholders.

The Declaration outlines a set of principles, recommendations and commitments to guide new hydropower developments and shape the sector’s contribution to the energy transition.

“The San José Declaration consultation process ensures that everyone can have their say,” said Turnbull. “So, I want to say to everyone who has an interest in getting to that net-zero emission goal, who has an interest in ensuring we don't suffer from dangerous levels of global heating, to have a look at the draft.

“This is not the International Hydropower Association's document, this is your document, and the more you can contribute to it, the better it will be.”

The final version of the San José Declaration will be launched at the 2021 World Hydropower Congress in September. The event is taking place fully online and is free to attend.

Making renewables reliable

The San José Declaration will help to shape the conversation on renewable energy systems as world leaders prepare to gather in Glasgow for COP26 in November.

Turnbull emphasised how hydropower can play a crucial role in balancing the energy systems of the future by providing flexible storage backup for variable renewables such as wind and solar.

“Sustainable hydropower is absolutely critical to the energy transition,” he said. “It's absolutely critical to achieving net-zero emissions. We simply cannot do without it.  

“We need to make renewables reliable, and hydropower is the answer.”

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