Hydropower projects that are seeking certification against the newly launched Hydropower Sustainability Standard can now apply for financing to support costs, the International Hydropower Association has announced.
A fund of up to US$1 million provided by the Swiss government and managed by the IHA’s non-profit sustainability division is available to around 40 hydropower projects over the next three years. Recipients will receive a grant to part sponsor the cost of commissioning an independent sustainability assessment and applying for certification.
The Hydropower Sustainability Standard is a labelling system that was launched at the 2021 World Hydropower Congress. Under the scheme, projects that undergo an independent assessment and meet minimum performance criteria are awarded with a Certified Sustainable Hydropower label.
“Sustainable hydropower has a crucial role to play in the fight against climate change and decarbonising global energy grids. It is vital to ensure that future hydropower development is carried out sustainably, conserving biodiversity, protecting ecosystems and improving the lives of affected communities,” commented Joao Costa, Head of Sustainability at IHA. “This fund can help hydropower developers and operators across the world to upgrade the sustainability of their hydropower projects and help generate the clean, green, sustainable hydropower needed to power the planet”
Applications for the funding close on 8 December 2021. In selecting projects, preference will be given to projects looking to access climate and green bonds, or for projects where the assessment is intended to achieve certification against the Hydropower Sustainability Standard as opposed to simply funding a performance assessment.
The fund is available to all projects at any stage of development and operation. Applicants will need to demonstrate a strong track record or commitment to sustainability and show that their project aligns with national or regional development policies.
For more information, visit the HESG fund page.