Russia has massive hydropower and wind energy potential

Russia has massive hydropower and wind energy potential

Wind power and hydropower are the renewable energy sources with the best chance of successful deployment in Russia, a new paper has suggested.

The country has great potential for renewable energy generation thanks to the size of its territory and its climatic and terrain diversity. It also has swathes of unoccupied land that could be used for building wind farms across much of its territory, the authors of the paper said as quoted by Newswise.

Hydropower is another promising resource, which Russia is already utilizing at quite a scale. Its installed hydropower capacity is 45 GW, according to RusHydro—the state water utility—with annual generation at 165 billion kWh.

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Russia has the second most abundant hydropower resources in the world, the utility notes on its website, but it also has further potential for development, with new construction already planned for Siberia and the Far East.

The authors of the new paper note, however, that the deployment of more renewable energy capacity has been slow to take off in Russia for reasons that are pretty obvious: besides hydropower, Russia also boasts some of the world’s most abundant oil and gas resources. It also has a well-developed nuclear power industry. Demand for renewables, therefore, has not been as urgent as in countries dependent on imported energy.

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“The renewable energy sector is very capital-intensive and largely depends on legislation,” said one of the paper’s authors, Ural Federal University research engineer Ephraim Bonah Agyekum.

“The existing documents in the field of renewable energy in Russia are not enough for its progressive development, - emphasizes the researcher. - There is an objective need to revise the mechanism of RES development in the domestic and global markets, to make it more attractive for investors and countries exporting green energy.”

According to Agyekum and his co-authors, if Russia develops its renewable energy capacity, it could become a major exporter of green energy.

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