European hydro capacity compared to the demand for electricity
Hydro Capacity in the EU-15 and Norway
22 days the energy storage capacity of hydro across Western Europe, (the EU15 countries plus Norway and Iceland), expressed in terms of average daily electricity demand
177 TWh the storage capacity, put another way. That’s the same as 0.604 quads, 22MTCe, 15 MTOe, 152Pcal, 637PJ, or 465kWh per person across the 381 million people in the EU15+Norway.
147 GW the peak capacity of hydro across Western Europe.
And there’s more:
Went live in 2009
Being built now
- 480 MW Limberg II project
- 171 MW Baixo Sabor project on the Sabor River in northern Portugal
- 345 MW additional capacity at the repowering of the Venda Nova Dam in Portugal
Plans for Britain
SSE have announced that they will build two new pumped hydro storage facilities in Scotland, each to be 300-600MW
Beyond the EU15, but within Europe
- 185 MW Avce, Slovenia, completed in 2009
- 1,000 MW Limmern project, Linthal Valley, Switzerland
- 628 MW Nant de Drance project, Switzerland
- 430 MW Reisseck 2 project, Austria
Final thoughts and caveats
Given that Gregor Czisch required direct personal correspondence4 with UCTE to get a figure for hydro storage capacity for 1997, I expect one would have to do the same again today to get the figure for the expanded UCTE grid, and for figures more recent than 1997. As far as I can tell from the ENTSOE-E site, although the figures for peak capacity are available online, the storage capacity numbers are not: if you can provide those numbers, or a link to them, I’d be grateful. The NORDEL 2008 Annual Statistics show that their reservoirs still hold 121 TWh. The storage figure expressed as 22 days of consumption does not mean that we could turn off all other generation for 22 days, and only use hydro: each plant has a peak power output that limits what could be generated.
- “Nordel, Installed capacity on 31 Dec. 1996”, Nordel, Oslo 1997.
- “Nordel, Water Reservoirs 1996”, Nordel, Oslo 1997
- “UCTE Annual Statistics 1998”, Vienna, 1998
- “Speicherkapazitäten der Wasserkraftwerke innerhalb der UCTE, Stand 1997”, Personal correspondence between Gregor Czisch and UCTE, 2000
- HRW (formerly Hydro Review Weekly), (ISSN 1072-9542), pp12-25, Vol. 17, No. 6, December 2009