The sustainable hydropower sector is at the heart of two new initiatives that aim to accelerate the clean energy transition, both announced at COP27 today.
Planning for Climate Commission aims to accelerate hydropower and other renewables
The Planning for Climate Commission is a new global forum focused on speeding up planning and approvals for the massive deployment of sustainable hydropower, other renewables and green hydrogen, needed to address climate change and energy security.
10,800 gigawatts (GW) of installed renewables capacity will be needed by 2030 to keep the 1.5°C target within reach. Achieving production of the 100 million tonnes of green hydrogen needed to replace fossil hydrogen and decarbonise both food production and heavy industry by 2030 will require 800 GW of renewable energy alone. Green hydrogen is a hydrogen produced fuel obtained from electrolysis of water with electricity generated by low-carbon power sources such as hydropower, wind and solar.
The numbers are staggering and will only be achieved through a new, innovative and efficient approach to planning and approvals which ensures both speed and buy-in from communities.
The Planning for Climate Commission includes a diverse range of global leaders and experts with outstanding experience in climate and renewable energy policy making.
As a joint initiative by the Green Hydrogen Organisation, International Hydropower Association, the Global Wind Energy Council, the Global Solar Council and the Long Duration Energy Storage Council, the Planning for Climate Commission will agree a set of recommendations by mid-2023 and is expected to present its findings to the UN General Assembly in September 2023.
Eddie Rich, CEO of the International Hydropower Association (IHA) says: “IEA and IRENA say that we need to double global hydropower capacity by 2050 to meet net zero. This cannot be achieved while projects are taking in excess of five years just to be approved. Through this Commission, we hope to find mechanisms that embed sustainability into all renewable infrastructure at the same time as streamlining the approval process.”
Global Renewables Alliance brings key industry organisations together on climate change
Another important initiative, the Global Renewables Alliance, formalises partnerships between global industry organisations representing the Wind, Solar, Hydropower, Green Hydrogen, Long Duration Energy Storage and Geothermal energy industries.
In an unprecedented alliance, all technologies required for the energy transition are collaborating to ensure an accelerated energy transition, that targets are met and that vital coordination and planning takes place.
The alliance also aims to position renewable energy as a pillar of sustainable development and economic growth, particularly in the Global South.
The Global Renewables Alliance will use the collective weight of its members’ technologies to overcome the challenges affecting the global energy transition and increase the share of voice for renewables.
Mr Rich says: “No single energy source can reach net zero alone. Renewables must work together to supercharge the clean energy transition and to limit further, devastating temperature rises.
“IHA is delighted to join this Alliance to raise awareness about why total decarbonisation is necessary and possible, and to work with the entire renewables family to deliver smart, efficient energy for the future.”
Further information on the Planning for Climate Commission is available here.