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Hydro Power Advances in Southeast Asia
In South East Asia small sized hydropower technologies bear a promising potential to electrify rural communities and facilitate sustainable development opportunities. The Hydro Empowerment Network (HPNET) connects a variety of different actors and organisations in the region, with the aim to provide an effective south-south knowledge exchange platform. On its blog “The Flow”, HPNET published multiple updates from its networks and its members.
TONIBUNG recaps the past year and shares highlights of their work. Among other things, they co-hosted a learning exchange on community-led renewable energy in Sabah, Malaysia with practitioners from Kenya, Nepal, Cambodia and the Philippines sharing their experiences. TONIBUNG is an indigenous-lead organisation that develops sustainable alternatives for rural electrification while advocating for native rights and supporting local entrepreneurship in South East Asia.
Supporting rural development in the Philippines has been the mission of SIBAT for about 40 years now. Their work has a strong focus on approaching projects in a collaborative manner, involving communities at every stage of the project. An example for this is one knowledge-exchange event that SIBAT hosted 2022. The event brought practitioners of operating and non-operating mycro-hydro systems together and formulated solutions to but the systems back into operation.
However, the work in remote areas comes with its own challenges: During a technical training for local technicians SIBATs 6-wheeler truck got stuck on a muddy road. The workshop materials it carried had to be hauled by a motorcycle and by hand in order to successfully finish the training.
Within the last decade, the dissemination of hydropower has been on the rise in Meghalaya, an Indian state located in the north-east of the country, and members of HPNET have been involved in numerous activities. Two of them, VillageRES and Pt Entec Indonesia, have recently agreed to intensify their cooperation in order to successfully bid for a state tender that aims at successfully implementing 45 hydro power systems across Meghalaya.
In their article in The Flow, they report on the process behind designing and constructing the turbines, and focus on the main lesson learned along the way: close on-site examination is crucial to ensure sustainability of the systems.
Read the whole story of hydro power advancements in Southeast Asia on HPNETs blog The Flow.