Investment trends in global hydropower capacity by 2030

Oil&Gas Materials 30 June 2021 13:54 (UTC +04:00)
Investment trends in global hydropower capacity by 2030

BAKU, Azerbaijan, June 30

By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:

Global investment in hydropower capacity over the course of 2021-2030 is expected to total USD 540 billion, relatively in line with spending in the previous decade, Trend reports with reference to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

But stable spending does not equate to stable capacity growth. The investment level is similar only because higher spending on modernising existing plants in mature markets offsets lower investment in new power plants in younger markets such as those in Asia and Latin America. Investment in greenfield hydropower projects slows in the top three markets – China, Brazil and Turkey – which together accounted for 60% of the previous decade’s growth. The only two regions where spending on new power plants is forecast to increase are Asia Pacific (led by India) and sub-Saharan Africa, owing to the need for cost-effective power generation to expand electrification.

Almost one-quarter of global hydropower investment during 2021-2030 is expected to go towards modernising existing fleets through turbine replacements, uprates and capacity expansions. The aim of these investments is to extend a plant’s lifetime, restore its initial performance and improve its flexibility. The overwhelming majority of global spending on modernisation (75%) will be in North America, Europe and Eurasia, where most of the world’s ageing capacity is located. By 2030, almost half of the hydropower fleets in these regions will be more than 55 years old, the age at which the first major electromechanical investments are required to recover or improve performance. Most investment in these markets will therefore be used to restore performance to maintain availability, and to adapt the plant to operating conditions that may have changed since the plant was built.


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