Our priorities

Sustainability

Hydropower plays a vital role in reducing the world's dependence on fossil fuels. As a renewable energy, it is essential that hydropower is developed sustainably.

"Our challenge is to make sure projects are developed and operated responsibly and sustainably"

- Joao Costa, Head of Sustainability,
International Hydropower Association

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Overview

As the world's largest renewable energy, hydropower is part of the solution to climate change. With its pollution-free electricity, hydropower projects are providing a pathway to a sustainable future.

As with any infrastructure project, the construction of a hydropower facility will inevitably have local impacts on communities and the environment.

It is incumbent on all stakeholders, especially the hydropower developer and operator, to seek to maximise project benefits while avoiding, minimising or mitigating any negative impacts.

What constitutes good and best practice in hydropower development is defined by the Hydropower Sustainability Tools, a set of guidelines and assessment tools aligned with World Bank and IFC performance standards.

Our action

All hydropower projects can and should be developed and operated sustainably.

The International Hydropower Association (IHA) has played a leading role in the development of the Hydropower Sustainability Tools. The tools are used for guiding the construction and operation of hydropower projects around the world.

We deliver training and capacity building services on the tools targeted at professionals seeking professional qualifications.

In addition, we publish practical how-to guides focused on key issues from resettlement to benefit sharing.

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Sustainability tools

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How-to guides

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Good practice

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Blog: biodiversity

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Training academy

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Assessments

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December 3, 2020

New guidance to help improve the sustainability of river hydro schemes

Building a hydropower facility on a waterway will inevitably lead to some changes in downstream flows, with implications for river users and local ecosystems requiring responsible management.
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