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January 30, 2019 IHA0

Itaipu Binacional, the world’s largest generator of renewable energy, has become a strategic partner for the 2019 World Hydropower Congress.

The Brazilian-Paraguayan company operates the Itaipu power plant, which has produced more than 2.6 billion megawatt hours (MWh) of renewable electricity since it became operational in 1984.

In 2018, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA) launched a new Global Network of Sustainable Water and Energy Solutions with Itaipu Binacional as its supporting partner. The initiative will create a platform for sharing knowledge and good practices on integrated approaches for delivering Sustainable Development Goals 6 (clean water and sanitation) and Goal 7 (affordable and clean energy).

Richard Taylor, Chief Executive of the International Hydropower Association (IHA), welcomed Itaipu Binacional’s decision to support the World Hydropower Congress, which will be hosted in Paris from 14-16 May 2019. IHA is a member of the steering committee for the Global Network of Sustainable Water and Energy Solutions.

“Itaipu Binacional is a world leader in the hydropower sector and has made an extraordinary contribution to mitigating carbon emissions through the use of renewable energy since it began generation. Indeed, the World Hydropower Congress will mark the 35th anniversary of the Itaipu plant becoming operational.

“The company is today at the forefront of global efforts to share good practices in clean energy generation and responsible freshwater management in support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals,” Mr Taylor said.

With an annual production of over 90 million MWh, it is estimated that the electricity delivered by the Itaipu power plant avoids the emission of 38 million tonnes of CO2 per year, which gas-fired plants would produce to generate the same amount.

The 2019 World Hydropower Congress is organised by IHA. It will focus on hydropower’s role in delivering on the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals. The congress is expected to bring together up to 1,000 representatives from industry, government, finance, academia and civil society to set priorities for the future of hydropower.

In a statement, Itaipu Binacional said: “Aware of the challenges the world is facing, Itaipu supports the 2019 World Hydropower Congress under the theme ‘The Power of Water in a Sustainable, Interconnected World’, defending the benefits of hydroelectricity as a renewable source of energy and a vehicle for regional, social and environmental development.

“Itaipu is in line with the main international guidelines, protocols and platforms for sustainability, among them the SDGs, defined by the United Nations. Its social and environmental actions are oriented especially towards the protection of water, raw material for the generation of energy, and in improving the quality of life of the nearby communities in Brazil and Paraguay, reinforcing the business commitment with the Agenda 2030.

“By virtue of its leadership and experience in the energy sector and the broad sustainability agenda, Itaipu, together with the UN, supports the implementation of joint activities and contributes to capacity building, dialogues and cooperation at all levels, promoting the management of knowledge and the exchange of experiences in the theme of water and energy.

“Itaipu, besides being an example of integration and peaceful cooperation between two countries, also invests in research and innovation for the development of new technologies in the energy sector that can be at service of the Brazilian and the Paraguayan societies, with emphasis on renewable energy sources, and aiming at the sustainable development of its area of influence in both margins of the Parana River.”

About Itaipu Binacional

Itaipu Binacional is the largest generator of hydroelectricity in history, with more than 2.6 billion MWh produced since 1984. The power plant is the result of a partnership between Brazil and Paraguay and is located at the Paraná River, the border between the two countries.

With 14,000 MW of installed capacity, the plant holds the world record of annual production, with 103.1 million MWh generated in 2016. It is currently responsible for 15 per cent of the electricity consumed in Brazil and 90 per cent in Paraguay. The reach of Itaipu, however, extends far beyond energy generation, with several projects on sustainable development that take place at the border region between the two countries.