Co-convenor:
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Focus Session

Regional interconnections

Connecting hydro to new markets

Thursday 16 May 2019 | 09:30-10:45

As electricity grids become more interconnected, hydropower will increasingly supply not just national but regional needs. Future energy systems will pool energy resources spanning geographies and time zones, enabling hydropower to work together with other renewables.

Hydro has offered baseload and grid balancing for decades, and as market integration continues, new synergies between adjacent grids can be captured. High voltage transmission can extend access to flexible pumped storage for example, in areas where high wind and solar needs storage.

However development of cross-border grid connections can be challenging, given the complexity and cost. This session will gather experts from around the world with experience in regional interconnections, to discuss existing schemes, planned projects, and power pools. A key focus will be sharing lessons learned, and hydropower’s potential for region-wide markets.

Session objectives:

How can regional interconnections help build energy security?

Export of hydropower’s low cost, reliable and flexible electricity across national borders already brings benefits, and can be a key driver for investment. The session aims to highlight the role of hydropower in regional energy systems, and its potential for new schemes. A key objective will be understanding what models help the development process.


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