Economy, Domestic Economy

Water Shortages Unrelated to Hydropower Plants

Water Shortages Unrelated  to Hydropower Plants Water Shortages Unrelated  to Hydropower Plants

Construction of hydroelectric power plants has no dire effects on country’s water resources, a deputy minister of energy said late Monday.

Alireza Daemi pointed to the serious water shortages in the country and gave assurances that hydroelectric power plants “do not result in the depletion of water levels in reservoirs and dams because water withdrawn from the reservoirs for electricity generation is later pumped back to its source.”

Almost 10% of electricity is generated from hydroelectric power plants, and this number will increase “wherever there is abundance of water allowing for power generation”, ISNA quoted him as saying.  The Amir Kabir Dam north of Karaj and Latyan near Tehran have been cited as examples “where this potential is seen.”

Iran has 30 hydroelectric power plants, the largest being Karun-3 with a capacity of 2280MW. Based on the annual report of the energy ministry, total hydroelectric power generation capacity was approximately 10.5 gigawatts in the past year (March 2013- 2014).

The total electricity generation currently is 70,000MW (up from 90MW in 1948 and 7024MW in 1978).  Iran’s peak demand for electricity was 45,693MW in the summer of 2013.

Iran now is the 19th largest producer and 20th largest consumer of electricity in the world. A research by the government shows that between 15,000-20,000MW of capacity should be added in the next 20 years.

In recent years Iran has put greater emphasis on participation of domestic and foreign investors in power generation, with projects underway to add 40,000 MW to the national grid.