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100+ NGOs Call Out EU Overreliance on Hydropower

An open letter signed by over 100 NGOs ahead of an EU Parliament trialogue on REPowerEU, the bloc’s plan to make Europe independent from Russian fossil fuels before 2030, said that “counting on new hydropower to accelerate Renewable Energy deployment in Europe is irresponsible”. It asks the European Parliament, European Commission and Council Presidency to exclude new hydropower from go-to areas as well as to set sustainability criteria for the renewable energy source. According to the letter, 60% of water bodies in the EU do not have good ecological status and hydropower potential has been “so exploited already” that new projects would only make a “small contribution to the energy production mix”. It also highlights that that hydropower production relies on steady water flows but water scarcity already affects 20% of the EU territory on average every year, with six of the top ten global risks over the next ten years highlighted by the World Economic Forum being directly linked to water scarcity and loss of freshwater biodiversity. Additionally, European precipitation patterns are expected become more unreliable in the future, putting hydropower production at further risk.  

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