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Climate change

Hydropower generates low-carbon power, and provides essential climate adaptation services to mitigate the impact of extreme weather events such as floods and drought.

Although characterised by their longevity, hydropower plants in some areas will need to strengthen their resilience to climate change to ensure operations are not compromised in the long term.

The precise greenhouse gas footprint of a reservoir can vary depending on a range of conditions. Trusted tools are required to measure GHG emissions and give confidence to communities, investors and governments about a hydropower project’s low carbon profile.

Our action

IHA is supporting hydropower to both become more resilient to climate change and to be more widely recognised as a low carbon form of energy.

We launched IHA’s Hydropower Sector Climate Resilience Guide to support owners, developers and investors to plan, build, upgrade and operate facilities in the face of variable climatic and hydrological conditions.

We continue to offer training and validation services for the GHG Reservoir (G-res) Tool for reporting on the carbon footprint of a reservoir. Developed in collaboration with the UNESCO Chair for Global Environmental Change, the tool provides a cost-effective way to more accurately assess net greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate resilience

IHA has published the Hydropower Sector Climate Resilience Guide to ensure that hydropower projects will be resilient to climate change.

The guide provides workable international good practice guidance for project owners, governments, financial institutions and private developers. 


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Latest associated content

  • Sava River

    Multi-purpose Sava River development under consideration

    Early-stage planning is under way for a multi-purpose hydropower programme on the Sava River in Croatia.

    Blog post
    19 March 2014
  • Jean-Michel Devernay

    Interview: Jean-Michel Devernay, World Bank

    Jean-Michel Devernay is the World Bank's chief technical specialist for hydropower.

    Blog post
    28 February 2014
  • Sustainability

    Five ways to improve the sustainability of your hydropower project

    The Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol is a tool for assessing the sustainability of hydropower projects against a comprehensive range of social, environmental, technical and economic considerations.

    Blog post
    13 February 2014
  • Gil Maranhão Neto

    Interview: Gil Maranhão Neto, GDF Suez

    Gil Maranhão Neto is the director of business development at GDF Suez Energy Brasil. He spoke with us about the hydropower environment in the Amazon region, the role of the private sector and the impacts of IHA's work.

    Blog post
    4 February 2014
  • The protocol explained

    The protocol explained

    We have launched a poster to introduce people to the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol as part of the Hydro4LIFE project.

    Blog post
    16 December 2013


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