4 Jan 2019

Global pumped hydro atlas

Energy Transition Hub researchers at ANU have completed a global atlas of 530,000 potential pumped hydro energy storage sites. The sites combined have a potential storage capacity of 22 million Gigawatt-hours (GWh) - which is about 100 times more than needed to support a global 100% renewable electricity grid. 

The significance of the work is that there is an abundance of pumped hydro storage for balancing 100% renewable electricity in every part of the world. Pumped hydro comprises 97% of global storage because it is mature and low cost. 

The identified sites are outside national parks and are mostly closed-loop (not river-based). Each identified site comprises an upper and lower reservoir pair plus a hypothetical tunnel route between the reservoirs, and includes data such as latitude, longitude, altitude, head, slope, water volume, water area, rock volume, dam wall length, water/rock ratio, energy storage potential and approximate relative cost (categories A-E).

Detailed zoomable maps and images showing the locations of the potential sites and technical details are available at http://re100.eng.anu.edu.au/global/



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