Rethinking Hydropower Management: Safeguarding Biodiversity while improving Climate Adaptation
The world is facing an unprecedented change to transform society toward renewable energy sources, and the role of Hydropower in this transition cannot go unnoticed. There is an urgent need for adapting the management of hydropower to knowledge-based solutions that satisfy both the climate and biodiversity goals simultaneously and ensure that these goals do not cancel out one another. The Interreg Aurora funded project RE-HYDRO takes a holistic and multidisciplinary view through collaboration between social, hydrological, ecological, and climate perspectives in an integrated analysis for case studies in Finland and Sweden. The RE-HYDRO project combines these through models, experiments, and field observations by using predictions and scenarios developed in one to assess impacts on the other.
It is well established that climate and energy generation are tightly coupled with nature and biodiversity. This implies that these attributes need to be tackled together. Even though hydropower supports a carbon-neutral society, it has many influences on the river corridor and ecosystem services. The RE-HYDRO project will produce knowledge, tools, and a multidisciplinary understanding of how river systems can be managed in a sustainable way. Optimized hydropower regulations taking account of ecosystem services will improve the local wellbeing and the resource-wise economy.