Recognizing how hydropower can contribute to lessening the nation’s carbon footprint, the U.S. Department of Energy released the Hydropower Vision: A New Chapter for America’s 1st Renewable Electricity Source report – a comprehensive, first-of-its-kind roadmap that offers a 360-degree view of the hydropower industry.
The 2016 report offered pathways for hydropower to play a larger role in securing our clean energy future. The Hydropower Vision report fundamentally hit the reset button for our industry by ushering in a new way of thinking about hydropower investments.
As a community, we look to this report as a point of collaboration and prioritization.
As a nation, we look to this report as a roadmap for unlocking hydro’s potential.
Reimagining the Hydropower Vision Roadmap
The clean energy landscape has changed since the Hydropower Vision report was released in 2016. To address industry progress and its impact on the Vision, DOE engaged the broader hydropower community to reimagine the goals for hydropower by 2050.
In collaboration with the national labs, DOE and the Hydropower Foundation facilitated a series of workshops with leaders in the hydropower community to revisit the 2016 report.
The first workshop addressed the overall Vision through the collaborative development of key messages that describe hydropower’s role in our clean energy future. These key messages prioritize sustainable approaches, flexible generation, and dam safety, and we have used them to guide the reimagining process.
Subsequent workshops assessed the relevance of the 2016 goals within the current hydropower landscape and identified priorities for future research and development that were not included in the original Vision, such as cybersecurity and dam safety.
Feedback from these workshops was integrated into new goals which were presented to the broader hydropower community at 2022 Clean Currents and a subsequent webinar.
Beginning in early 2023, the broad hydropower community is invited to engage in discussions to identify and prioritize new activities needed to meet those goals.
Once these discussions have been completed, the Reimagined Hydropower Vision Roadmap will be a living document that can better respond to future opportunities, challenges, and developments within the Hydropower community.