The findings of the World Small Hydropower Development Report 2016 were arrived at by totalling data from a wide range of sources. Methodologies vary greatly from source to source, with an inevitable compromise of data integrity to varying degrees. One obvious issue is the lack of a universally agreed definition for small hydropower. While some countries define their small hydropower plants with a capacity of up to 1 MW, others include plants with capacities up to 30 MW or 50 MW. Nonetheless, a widely accepted definition of small hydropower is of plants up to 10 MW and, where possible, data have been provided according to this definition and care has been taken to indicate differing definitions within individual country reports.
An additional issue arises from the varying accuracy and specificity of estimated potential figures. For many countries, accurate assessments of potential capacity are difficult to establish. While care has been taken to provide the most accurate data, it should be noted that the information presented has been derived from various sources that are often unclear as to whether the estimate is theoretical, technical or economically feasible.
Furthermore, not all countries have been able to identify their small hydropower potential and, in some cases, planned small hydropower projects have been reported instead. In other cases, data on potential were completely unavailable and already developed capacity was used to indicate the minimal available potential. Thus some countries would have been misrepresented to appear as having fully developed small hydropower resources. Where this occurs, care has been taken to make it clearer. However, it should be highlighted that despite the limitation on data, it is likely there is some level of small hydropower potential remaining in these countries.
When comparing data with the World Small Hydropower Development Report 2016, increases and decreases in installed capacity and estimated potential are, on occasion, due to the use of different or more accurate studies, and as such do not always reflect actual changes in small hydropower development. In other cases, plant improvements have led to higher capacities that moved individual plants above the 10 MW threshold and are therefore no longer included in the small hydropower figures. In general, however, differences between the Reports should be considered reflective of a growing degree of accuracy as much as they are an indication of additional small hydropower capacity or potential.
This Report covers 160 countries. Countries that were not included were those that had no known installed small hydropower capacity, potential or for which the data were inaccessible to the point that precludes a full country report. Countries adhered to the geographical regions and composition defined by the United Nations Statistics Division. Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia do not contain many countries or territories that use small hydropower and were therefore combined under the regional heading of ‘Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICT)’. This report was compiled for both ‘countries’ and ‘territories’. Overseas territories have been included in the continent where they are geographically located following the online M49 list of the United Nations Statistics Division. Countries that are not part of the United Nations were not considered in this Report. In some cases, the terms ‘country’ and ‘territory’ may be used interchangeably. This does not imply an opinion on the legal status of any country or territory.
List of abbreviations
ADB Asian Development Bank
AfDB African Development Bank
CER Certified Emission Reduction
CDM Clean Development Mechanism
CSP Concentrated solar power
EBRD European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
ECOWAS Economic Community of West African States
EIA Environmental Impact Assessment
ESHA European Small Hydropower Association
FIT Feed-in tariff
GEF Global Environment Facility
GIZ Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit
IEA International Energy Agency
IRENA International Renewable Energy Agency
JICA Japan International Cooperation Agency
NEP National Energy Policy
OLADE Latin American Energy Organization (Organización Latinoamericana de Energía)
PICT Pacific Island Countries and Territories
PPA Power Purchase Agreement
PPP Public Private Partnership
RE Renewable energy
RET Renewable energy technology
UNDP United Nations Development Programme
UNEP United Nations Environment Programme
UNESCO United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
UNFCCC United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
VAT Value Added Tax
WFD Water Framework Directive
kWh Kilowatt hour
GWh Gigawatt hour
MVA Mega Volt Ampere
Rpm Rate per minute
m3/s Cubic metre per second
kWp Kilowatt peak
CO2 Carbon dioxide