Climate change has decreased hydroelectric energy generation in the Upper Euphrates Basin, says the new HPA Report...
The report titled “The Impact of Climate Change in the Upper Tigris and Euphrates Basin,” prepared by the Hydropolitics Association, says that “the electricity generation of Keban, Karakaya, and Atatürk Dams has gradually decreased by 25% since the last 30 years.
These dams on the Euphrates River annually generate one-fifth of the total hydroelectric energy in Türkiye. These dams have generated 17 years of lower project capacity in the last 30 years. In the Atatürk Dam, the annual generation amounts during the eight years in the last 30 years were 45% below the capacity of 8.9 GWh.
The report prepared by the experts of the Hydropolitics Association investigated the reasons for this continuous energy generation decrease. In the report, many effects that may cause a continuous decrease in the energy generation from the dams in the Upper Euphrates basin have been investigated in detail.
It was concluded that this gradual decrease in hydroenergy generation in the last 30 years was caused by a decrease in precipitation and meteorological drought periods in the basin. In addition, many other scientific research results examining the effects of climate change in this region and snowfall analyses made by the General Directorate of Meteorology (MGM) for the region have been reviewed. It was found that the tendency to decrease hydroelectric energy production mentioned in the report was also compatible with these results and analyses.
Dursun Yıldız, President of the Hydropolitics Association, made the following statement regarding the results of the report:
- Climate change has reduced hydroenergy generation in the Upper Euphrates Basin for the last 30 years. This decreased tendency is likely to continue.
- Climate change will also adversely affect irrigation projects in the GAP region.
- This has been a concrete example for the studies to take into account the effect of climate change on transboundary water allocation agreements ongoing in the UNECE.
- Climate change will also have significant effects on the hydropolitics of the Tigris and Euphrates River Basin.
- Because of climate change’s adverse effects on water resources in the region, existing plans on sectoral water allocation and regional hydropolitics need to be updated.