Since there are no currently active contests, we have switched Climate CoLab to read-only mode.
Learn more at
Skip navigation

Please find below the judging results for your proposal.

Finalist Evaluation

Judges'' comments

The contributors propose a scheme to use small scale Hydroelectric power plants to provide electricity to communities in off-grid areas. Many questions raised by judges in the first phase remain unanswered. In addition we should outline two fundamental mismatches: - the scheme of "standardization" of hydroelectric power, whereby this technology is one of the least "standard" as it heavily depend on the local site characteristic to study the resource, the engineering and construction of the plant. - the context, outlined by the contributor of low local skills with the use of a renewable energy technology that requires significant skills during the operation vs the lower level needed by solar or wind.

It is not clear how many of the barriers to small scale hydropower development (utilizing CDM funding) would be tackled by this project. It is also not clear that the proposed actions would actually reduce these barriers substantially.

Semi-Finalist Evaluation

Judges'' ratings


Judges'' comments

Hydroelectric power, when available, is usually among the least expensive methods of generating electricity. In the developing world, there are many communities that are not connected to a national power grid and who must get power from small scale diesel generators. These are relatively inexpensive to install, but can be costly to run. Some of these communities may be located in regions with some hydroelectric potential. In these situations, replacing the diesel generators with small scale hydroelectric facilities could be cost effective. Any such replacement would help the environment by eliminating, or greatly reducing, the emissions associated with the displaced diesel generators.However, I believe, some additional information is needed before the feasibility of this proposal can be fairly assessed. For example, - How much would a working hydro facility cost for the pilot community?- How representative is the pilot community? That is, would other applications be expected to be somewhat more or less expensive?- What are the key factors driving facility's cost?- Many regions do not have any hydro power potential and some of those who do have already developed the resource. What is the actual size of the market for this application? If all the suitable locations were developed, what would be the maximum possible reduction in emissions?- How would the proposed association be more effective at developing these hydro power applications than the sales groups of engineering firms currently working in this sector?- How would the funds be raised? What return would investors be expected to receive?- Power generation in many regions is strictly regulated. What licensing and regulatory obstacles would need to be overcome? Is permitting required? What lead time is required to get the necessary regulatory approval?- How will the electricity be metered? How will the community pay for the power? What would be the cost of building a metering, billing, and collections process? Can the initial investment in such a system be recovered from future installations?-

This is a solid proposal. The proposed actions and outcome are well described. However, the proposed benefits are not well described. The proposal indicates that the average transaction costs for CDM projects is $63000 USD. What proportion of total project costs for a small hydro power project does this represent? Is there an estimate for how much this figure could be reduced with the HCSRM? The HCSRM certainly will not reduce transaction costs to nothing. Also, the proposal indicates that the global small hydro power potential is 173GW but then indicates that global production could rise to 2000 GW by 2050. Are both of these figures accurate? How is this reconciled?

Share conversation: Share via:

Javier Sabogal

Jul 15, 2015


1 |
Share via:
1. Where he comes up with the 63,000 USD per project. The transaction cost of 63000 USD per project is an average calculated based on an extensive scientific literature published on academic journals and reports of market stakeholders. As early as Gouvello and Coto 2003, PCF 2003, Michaelowa 2003, Krey 2005, Teri 2005. To new studies like Magnusson 2015, Watts et al. 2015, or Rahman et al. 2015. 2. Where else can this be implemented? Once the HCSRM model is proved in Latin America, the model could be implemented anywhere. It would especially benefit communities non-connected to the grid living near small streams. 3. Can you show the numbers for the 1200 rural families that would benefit from this. 1200 rural families live in isolated areas not connected to the Colombian national grid. The identification of the families and geographical location was done by the UPME (National Energy Planning Agency) in 2014. The potential for implementing the HCSRM model is big because those families are located near streams with enough flow to generate electricity. Currently, most of the non-connected population produces electricity using small diesel power plants, which is a very inefficient source due to the high operation cost and emissions. 4. What is maintenance like? Small hydropower has most of the cost on the installation stage, the idea is that the communities are involve in the process and therefore the maintenance is in their interest, reducing the need of displacing technicians to isolated areas. The gains of this approach are: a reduction of the maintenance cost, an incentive to keep the plant working, and capacity building in the community.