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Fine-Tuning Observations to Better Manage and Design Hydroelectricity Assets

Submitted by Élyse Fournier 10th August 2017 15:47



The hydroelectric sector stands to benefit from some aspects of climate change, such as increased flows due to melting glaciers. To take advantage of these potential opportunities, however, requires considerable knowledge of climate change projections and hydroelectric generation. Landsvirkjun, the National Power Company of Iceland, has become a leader in this field during the last 15 years. In collaboration with other power companies, universities and meteorological services across Scandinavia, Landsvirkjun has produced data on the river flows that incorporate climate trends. Every five years, the company uses the data to adjust its reservoir-management plans. Landsvirkjun also uses the long-term perspective provided by climate projections to design and adjust existing and proposed new assets to take advantage of anticipated increases in flow rates.

Key Takeaways

  • People are more receptive to a step-by-step approach to climate change adaptation

  • Collaboration with other power companies, universities, and other institutions facilitates and boosts the credibility of adaptation efforts

  • Having an alternative plan is a good way to cope with the inherent uncertainty of greenhouse gas emission scenarios


At a Glance

Industry sector: Endowment Generation
Type of resources: Hydro
Type of energy: Electricity
Adaptation type: Management Design and operation standards, guidelines, tools and schedules Physical New generation, carrying and transformation capacity
Organization: Landsvirkjun Power
Organization type: Utility