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News & Info 26 July 2022

Position paper on the future of Hydropower in the SET Plan

Hydropower as a catalyst and facilitator for the clean, safe and independent energy transition in Europe

This common position paper serves the purpose of promoting the voice of hydropower in tackling the challenging geopolitical landscape in the energy transition and the fight against climate change. This is the result of a collaboration between Hydropower EuropeInternational Hydropower AssociationIEA hydropowerEERA JP Hydropower in response to the EU energy policy – revamping the Strategic Energy Technology Plan initiative


Key Messages:

  • Given Europe’s ambition to raise the renewables target to 45%1 hydropower is critical to ensure Europe’s energy system has the necessary renewable electricity and flexibility to protect grid stability from intermittent renewable energy, to sustain the green transition.
  • While hydropower is the largest renewable non-intermittent electricity supplier in the World and in Europe, there remains significant potential, mainly through refurbishments,  new multipurpose storage projects and pumped-storage powerplants.
  • More funding is needed in research and innovation to deploy solutions at the scale required in support of sustainable solutions that offer win-win situations for the environment and from an operational perspective. 
  • Europe must protect against periods of dunkelflaute by including flexible power generation and dispatchable large capacity renewable storage, like hydropower, in national targets.
  • To ensure there is enough hydropower to meet Europe’s decarbonization goals and maintain energy security, hydropower must have a prominent role within the Strategic Energy Technology (SET) Plan.
  • The upcoming ETIP will serve as the basis for collaboration between stakeholders on hydropower and increase their visibility within the SET Plan