Conference on Hydropower and Water Management

News & Media

Ljubljana, 26/27 March 2013. Organised by Slovenia and the ICPDR, a conference on hydropower and water management will be held where draft guiding principles will be discussed with a broader audience, accompanied by presentations on practical examples for the application.

Aerial view of hydropower dam

Acknowledging the challenges of sustainable hydropower development in the frame of the existing legal and policy frameworks, the ICPDR was asked in the Danube Declaration 2010 to organise in close cooperation with the hydropower sector and all relevant stakeholders a broad discussion process. The aim is to develop guiding principles that both integrate environmental aspects in the use of existing hydropower plants, including potential increases in their efficiency, and to aid in the planning and construction of new hydropower plants. This activity is also included in the Action Plan of the EU Danube Strategy under Priority Area 2 “Energy”.

Within the frame of the ICPDR, the three “Lead Countries” Austria, Romania and Slovenia were nominated to steer the process of the elaboration of “Guiding Principles on Sustainable Hydropower Development in the Danube Basin” (Guiding Principles). In support of development of the document, a broad participative process was set up with the involvement of representatives from administrations (energy and environment), the hydropower sector, NGOs, and the scientific community. During the course of a number of meetings of this Team of Experts, significant steps were taken towards a common understanding of the issue and draft versions of the Guiding Principles were subsequently developed.

Guiding Principles on Sustainable Hydropower Development in the Danube Basin

The general objective of the Guiding Principles is to create a common vision and understanding of the requirements, the policy framework, and the issues to be addressed to ensure sustainable use of hydropower in the Danube basin. The document is expected to play an important role for a coherent and coordinated implementation of relevant legislation, in particular for the EU Renewable Energy Directive, the EU Water Framework Directive, and other relevant environmental and water management legislation.

The Guiding Principles primarily address public bodies and competent authorities responsible for the planning and authorization of hydropower. In particular, this includes those bodies at the national, regional, and local levels in charge of energy, environment, and water management issues. Furthermore, the Guiding Principles are also intended to provide relevant information for potential investors in the hydropower sector, as well as for NGOs and the interested public.

About the conference

The aim of the Conference is to present and discuss the results of the work undertaken in the frame of the two years of dialogue and to introduce to a broader audience the main outcome of this process and the draft content of the Guiding Principles. This will be accompanied by presentations on practical examples for the application. The Conference marks an important step towards the finalization of the “Guiding Principles on Sustainable Hydropower Development in the Danube Basin”.

European Union This workshop is supported by the EU Grant DRBMP-2012 and Slovenia.