Hydropower market forecasts regional growth

July 21st, 2017, Published in Articles: Energize


The global hydropower market is set to exceed 1300 GW by 2024, according to a new research report by Global Market Insights.

Rising electricity demand coupled with increasing investment towards sustainable energy will stimulate the global hydropower market size. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), hydroelectric generation accounts for over 80% of the total renewable energy mix.

North America and Europe have introduced plans to upgrade, renovate, and modernise their existing hydroelectric power stations to improve efficiency. For instance, in March 2015, Latvenergo announced that it would invest US$222,26-million in the reconstruction of Riga, Plavinas and Kegums hydroelectric power stations by 2022.

The US hydropower market size is projected to grow by more than 2% owing to its large untapped hydro reserves. Growing measures to minimise carbon footprints may further stimulate the business landscape. In 2015, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and Non-Powered Dams (NPDs) estimated 12 000 MW capacity of existing untapped reserves.

Reliability and a long operating life, coupled with low maintenance costs, are some of the key indicators which will stimulate hydropower’s market share. Flood control, irrigation, tourism, aquaculture and recreation in remote areas are some of the salient benefits, which will complement the industry’s outlook.

In Europe and North America, authorities have introduced bond funds to raise investment for hydroelectric projects. These funds are particularly aimed at acquiring present assets over the new build.

Low generating costs, along with the ability to produce high electric output, will foster hydropower’s market share. In 2016, the US department of energy projected levelised energy costs (LEC) of $56,2/MWh from hydroelectric compared to $191/MWh from solar thermal.

In 2013, Agder Energi awarded a contract worth $24,4-million to Alstom for the upgrading of the Iveland II hydroelectric plant in Norway, which has a generating capacity of approximately 150 GWh and 50 MW on annual basis.

In 2016, Andritz installed three hydroelectric power stations in Nicaragua and Brazil with an aggregate value of over $75-million with an aim to provide constant and reliable electricity.

Low ecological impact coupled with cost competitiveness are some of the key parameters which will embellish the mini hydropower market size. The University of Science and Technology of Hanoi (USTH), Vietnam in February 2016 installed 60 MW of mini capacity grid connected power station in 48 different locations with capacity range between 100 and 7500 kW.

Measures towards reducing carbon emissions, coupled with low civil refurbishment cost, will drive the micro- and pico-hydropower market. In 2016, the Philippines announced its plan to construct over 150 micro-plants, increasing the country’s electricity generating capacity by approximately 50 MW.

Contact Shankar Khatkale, Global Market Insights, shankar.k@gminsights.com



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