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Hydropower - Enhancing Storage and Flexibility for a Greener Future


Hydropower - Enhancing Storage and Flexibility for a Greener Future

Please note that this event took place in person only.

To respect the Green Deal’s objective of carbon neutrality by 2050, the European Commission has proposed to prioritise the implementation of energy transition projects. A step that many stakeholders consider as urgent as ever to fight climate change.

Hydropower accounts for the second biggest source of renewable energy in Europe, according to Eurostat. Beyond its renewable energy contribution, hydropower offers additional benefits to our electricity system. Particularly pumped storage hydropower plants provide storage and flexibility, balancing the fluctuations inherent in solar and wind energies. Pumped storage hydropower is already the biggest provider of EU electricity storage, and according to its advocates, its potential has not yet been completely utilised.

Pumped storage facilities are the most efficient and market ready technology to provide short- and long-term storage of electricity. In addition, they can deliver flexibility at low cost.

This makes pumped storage hydropower an important player in balancing the rapidly growing share of renewable energy from volatile sources such as wind and solar. It is therefore argued that pumped storage hydropower enables an affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy transition.

Join this Euractiv roundtable event to discuss how hydropower can contribute to achieving the EU Green Deal’s objectives. Questions to be discussed include:

- What role does hydropower play in supporting the Green Deal's objective of carbon neutrality by 2050? Specifically, what role do pumped storage hydropower plants play?
- How can we tap into the hidden hydropower potential? What possibilities do innovative and sustainable hydropower projects offer?
- How can we enhance hydropower while preserving nature?
- How can existing infrastructure be utilised to enhance efficiency and contribute more to energy storage?
- What regulatory framework do we need to accelerate the implementation of hydropower projects?

Supported by:


Euractiv Network Office
Boulevard Charlemagne 1, 1041 Brussels

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René Neuberger, Energy Attaché, Permanent Representation of Austria to the EU

Cosimo Tansini, Policy Officer for Renewables, European Environmental Bureau (EEB)

Yasmina Abdelilah, Energy Analyst, Renewable Energy Markets and Policies, International Energy Agency (IEA)

Christof Germann, CEO, illwerke vkw


Dave Keating


12:00 - 12:30 Registration of participants
12:30 - 12:35 Keynote speech
12:35 - 12:50 Panellist statements
12:50 - 13:40 Discussion and Q&A
13:40 - 13:45 Closing statements

Followed by a light networking lunch.


Sébastien de Decker

Related article

Is Europe’s hydropower potential tapped out? [Advocacy Lab Content]

Is Europe’s hydropower potential tapped out? [Advocacy Lab Content]

Huge dam projects built in Sweden, Austria and France decades ago might not be feasible today, but pumped storage hydropower at sites with existing infrastructure could have major potential to reduce the EU’s emissions.