Oregon Shines Light on Hydropower's Value

Voith Hydro is a leader in environmentally-friendly hydropower technology

Jul 14, 2015, 14:30 ET from Voith Hydro

PORTLAND, Ore., July 14, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- With its vast supply of clean and renewable hydropower that works in concert with the surrounding environment, Oregon provides the perfect setting to shine a light on the value of hydropower, according to Voith Hydro President and CEO Bob Gallo. Voith Hydro – one of the leading suppliers globally of hydropower equipment and services – is one of many participants and exhibitors in HydroVision, the world's largest hydropower gathering taking place this week at the Oregon Convention Center. While its U.S. headquarters are in York, Pennsylvania, Voith Hydro has an office in Springfield, Oregon to service its growing aftermarket sales and service business. The company also features offices and production facilities in Canada, ensuring it is able to serve customers across North America.

"Oregon is the perfect showcase for hydropower's past, as well as its future potential," said Gallo. "Though hydropower accounts for over 50% of Oregon's power generation, the state has the capacity to double the clean and renewable hydropower it already provides to power its homes and businesses. With the right policies in place, we can truly unleash hydropower's vast untapped potential, and Voith Hydro has the environmentally-friendly hydropower equipment and technology to power the future."

Oregon is one of the country's leading producers of hydroelectric power, providing a boost to its economy and keeping its electric rates lower relative to the rest of the country. While hydropower already provides over half of the state's power, according to a 2014 Department of Energy New Stream-reach Development report, Oregon could more than double its current 8,000 MW in installed capacity. Its potential is greater than any other state. Hydropower helps Oregon be a leader in the fight to combat climate change, and contributes a large portion of the estimated 200 million metric tons of carbon reduced by the use of hydropower in America.

The potential capacity in Oregon is part of 65,000 MW of available but untapped hydropower across the country. The U.S. can develop this potential by powering many of the approximately 80,000 dams that currently do not produce hydroelectric power, and streamlining an often burdensome and timely licensing process. Congress is currently attempting to build on 2013 legislation that streamlined the process for many small hydropower projects by exploring further regulatory reforms that will reduce inefficiencies and redundancies in the licensing process for projects both large and small. The need for timely reform is important given that 250 projects representing 11,000 MW of installed capacity are up for relicensing over the next 10 years.

When hydropower facilities are built or relicensed, Voith Hydro has the technology to improve efficiency – as well as environmental quality – at these facilities. From Kaplan turbines that maximize fish passage, to oil free hubs that dramatically reduce water pollution, and auto-venting turbines that improve dissolved oxygen content at hydropower, Voith Hydro is on the front lines of environmentally-friendly technology. In addition, Voith Hydro is a leader in small hydro solutions including the innovative StreamDiver – the plug-and-play modular turbine designed for conduits now opened up for expedited hydro development.

While hydropower's direct environmental benefits are immense, its other attributes are significant. It supports the development of other renewables through baseload power generation, provides for flood control, creates recreational opportunities, and supports irrigation projects. It also creates jobs. By one estimate, with the proper policies in place, hydropower could create 1.4 million cumulative jobs by 2025, on top of the 300,000 jobs already supported by American hydropower.

"Hydropower is a win-win for both the environment and the economy," Gallo continued. "Voith Hydro looks forward to continued progress to bring more of America's largest renewable resource online."

About the Company

Voith sets standards in the markets of energy, oil & gas, paper, raw materials and transport & automotive. Founded in 1867, Voith today has more than 39,000 employees, sales of €5.3 billion and locations in more than 50 countries, making it one of the largest family-owned companies in Europe.

The Importance of Hydropower

Hydropower is the largest, oldest and also most reliable form of renewable energy generation. Worldwide it makes an indispensable contribution to stable power supplies and hence to economic and social development – both in industrial countries and in emerging markets. At the same time, hydropower significantly contributes to climate-protecting energy generation. Voith has been a leading supplier of this technology since the early beginning, and continuously develops it further.

Contact: Lewis Lowe, 1-706-302-8404, lewisl@strategies360.com


SOURCE Voith Hydro