Advancing Hydropower Sustainability
The rapid advancement of hydropower agendas and the growing interest of a range of stakeholders about the high potential for adverse social and environmental impacts signals an urgent need for greater attention to this arena.
M-POWER is actively supporting more sustainable hydropower governance through its project activities (Hydropower Governance and Multi-Stakeholder Platforms). Hydropower Governance focuses on introducing and building capacity for the utilization of new governance tools, such as the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol (HSAP) and environmental flows among others. Some trial assessments have been completed.
AusAID has supported our work in this arena since 2009. We are now significantly expanding our activities in China and Laos to build upon some initial capacity development efforts over the last year in advancing more sustainable hydropower.
Collectively, this work is anticipated to influence the way in which hydropower is designed, developed and managed. We will facilitate constructive engagement with and learning of stakeholders (civil society, government, developers and banks) about hydropower development issues in the Mekong Region.
Our activities will raise awareness about and the processes related to the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol (HSAP) and others. We expect to see greater uptake of national, international and transnational sustainable hydropower guidelines and standards in the region.
It is our aim to also work with major hydropower companies operating in the region to make demonstrable gains in corporate social and environmental responsibility.
The Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol (HSAP) was developed by the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Forum (HSAF), which was established in 2007 by the International Hydropower Association (IHA). The Forum members are representatives of developing and developed country governments, the hydropower sector, social and environmental NGOs, and commercial and development banks. The final HSAP was approved by the IHA in November 2010.
We regard initiatives like the HSAP as important for aiming to put in place mechanisms with the potential to greatly improve decision-making around energy and hydropower futures.
Find out more about our information booklet: ‘Making hydropower more sustainable?: A sustainability measurement approach led by the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Forum’, which is published in six languages.