Sustainability criteria for small and large hydropower plants
Briefing | 10 May 2013
In recent years the EBRD has increased its funding for hydropower plants (HPPs) of all sizes. While small hydropower plants are seen by many as a far safer technology than large hydropower plants, they too can cause interruptions in river flows, loss of biodiversity and the degradation of habitats, disruptions for migrating fish and a lack of water for irrigation and drinking in downstream communities. The updated EBRD Environmental and Social Policy should include safeguards to ensure that small HPPs are truly sustainable. This briefing paper suggests a list of sustainability criteria as a first step.