Iberdrola Modernizes 45 Small Hydro Projects in Spain

Spanish utility Iberdrola reports it has modernized 45 of its 92 small hydropower projects in Spain over the last three years.

The utility and international renewable energy producer said it invested about 10 million euros (US$13 million) on renovating its oldest small hydropower plants, installing the most efficient and advanced technology to improve output and extend their lifespan.

Iberdrola said it upgraded three facilities in Basque country, seven in Valencia, 15 in Castile and Leon, four in Castile-La Mancha, nine in Navarre and seven in La Rioja. It has small hydro plants in Spain totaling 306 MW.

The utility said work included electro-mechanical re-engineering of turbines and generators, civil works to upgrade canals and weirs and replacement of control systems. It said environmental measures also were carried out, including raising fish ladders at weirs and fences along canals.

Iberdrola last year inaugurated the 2,000-MW La Muela Pumped-Storage project in Spain’s Jucar River Basin. It also began construction of a 25-MW expansion of the 32-MW San Pedro hydroelectric plant on the Sil River.

Iberdrola announced plans in 2010 to invest 9 billion euros (US$11.7 billion) to develop hydropower projects and other renewable energy sources in Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States.

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