Small hydropower (SHP) plants provide a clean, renewable and inexpensive source of energy that can be implemented virtually anywhere where there is enough water. A great solution for supplying electricity in remote rural areas, its usefulness is clear, yet its potential remains largely untapped.

The three-part ISO IWA 33Technical guidelines for the development of small hydropower plants, specifies the general principles and basic requirements of design for SHP projects up to 30 MWe. The International Workshop Agreement also provides guidance on such things as the methodologies, procedures and outcome requirements of SHP site selection and defines the professional technical terms and definitions commonly used.

Potential of SHP plants in many developing countries remains untapped and is hindered by a number of factors including the lack of best practices or standards for SHP development.

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