Small Hydropower Market Size to Reach USD 2.9 Billion by 2032 growing at 2.7% CAGR - Exclusive Report by Acumen Research and Consulting

Author: Acumen Research and Consulting

The Small Hydropower Market, valued at USD 2.3 Billion in 2023, is projected to surpass USD 2.9 Billion by 2032, indicating a robust CAGR of 2.7%

Small hydropower refers to hydroelectric power generation projects with a capacity of up to 10 megawatts. These systems utilize the natural flow of water to generate electricity, typically through turbines. They are often deployed in remote or rural areas to provide sustainable energy solutions, contributing to rural electrification and reducing reliance on fossil fuels. Small hydropower projects can be integrated into existing water infrastructure, such as irrigation canals or rivers, minimizing environmental impact. They offer a reliable and renewable energy source, with minimal greenhouse gas emissions, making them a valuable component of the global transition to clean energy. However, high upfront costs and long payback periods became a restraint for the small hydropower market. Furthermore, growing interest in distributed energy generation and microgrids prompted the small hydropower market. As a consequence, market participants are looking into new advancements in the small hydropower market.

Small Hydropower Market Value

Small Hydropower Market Statistics

  • The global small hydropower market, generating USD 2.3 billion in 2023, projects a robust CAGR exceeding 2.7% from 2024 to 2032
  • Asia-Pacific leads with a substantial 828 million of revenue in 2023
  • Europe anticipates impressive growth with a projected CAGR of 3%
  • Based on capacity, up to 1 MW dominance, holds 57% of market share in 2023
  • Based on type, micro hydropower sub-segment accomplished 56% of share in 2023
  • A discernible trend in the small hydropower market is adoption of innovative turbine designs and eco-friendly technologies to minimize environmental impact

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Small Hydropower Market Dynamics

Technological Advancements Making Small Hydropower More Efficient and Cost-Effective Fuels the Small Hydropower Market Value

Technological advancements are propelling small hydropower into a new era of efficiency and cost-effectiveness, fueling its market value. Innovations in turbine design, such as advanced materials and streamlined shapes, are maximizing energy extraction from flowing water while reducing maintenance costs. Automation and smart monitoring systems optimize operations, enhancing reliability and minimizing downtime. Improved environmental impact assessments and mitigation technologies address concerns, fostering greater acceptance and regulatory support. These advancements collectively drive the growth of the small hydropower market, positioning it as a sustainable and competitive energy solution for the future.

Integration with Existing Infrastructure for Water Management and Irrigation Offer Significant Small Hydropower Market Opportunity

Integrating small hydropower systems into existing water management and irrigation infrastructure presents a promising market opportunity. By harnessing the flow of water already in use for agricultural purposes, these systems can generate clean energy with minimal environmental impact. Such integration offers dual benefits of sustainable power generation and optimized water resource management. Leveraging existing infrastructure reduces implementation costs and streamlines the adoption process, making it an attractive proposition for both public and private stakeholders. This synergy between water management, irrigation, and small hydropower underscores a pathway toward a more resilient and efficient energy-water nexus.

Small Hydropower Market Segmentation

The global market for small hydropower has been segmented into capacity, type and components, and region.

  • Capacity is classified into up to 1 MW, 1-10 MW, and others
  • Type range are divided into micro hydropower, mini hydropower, and pico hydropower
  • Components are categorized electromechanical equipment, electric infrastructure, civil works, and others (includes engineering, structural, management, environmental mitigation, and project development)
  • The small hydropower market is geographically split into Europe, North America, Latin America, APAC, and the Middle East and Africa

Small Hydropower Market Regional Outlook

In terms of small hydropower market analysis, Asia Pacific dominates the Small Hydropower market due to its abundant water resources, supportive government policies and key players advancements. For instance, in July 2021, KONÄŒAR, a Croatian company specializing in transport, electrical, and energy solutions, revealed its inaugural contract in Japan. The agreement involves the production, oversight, and design of three generator assemblies for two small hydropower plants (SHPPs). The initial phase of the project will conclude with the commissioning of a synchronous generator with a nominal power of 5.2 MVA, while the subsequent phase will finalize with the designation of another synchronous generator of the same power capacity, as stated by the company. Countries like China, India, and Vietnam lead the region with significant investments and installations, driven by the need for clean energy and rural electrification. The region's vast geographical expanse and varied terrain offer ample opportunities for small hydropower projects, further boosting its dominance in the market.

Europe emerges as the fastest-growing region in the small hydropower market, fueled by increasing awareness of renewable energy and stringent environmental regulations and presence of robust key manufacturers. For instance, in 2023, GE Renewable Energy revealed a rehabilitation agreement with PGE Odnawialna S.A. to refurbish the four 125 MW pumped generators and turbines of the Porabka Zar pumped hydro storage plant in Poland. The project is slated to commence commercial operations in 2028. Moreover, countries like Norway, Switzerland, and Austria spearhead this growth, leveraging their advanced technologies and favorable incentives to accelerate small hydropower installations. The region's focus on sustainable development and reducing carbon emissions positions it as a key player in the global transition towards cleaner energy sources.

Small Hydropower Market Players

Small hydropower companies profiled in the report include Siemens, ANDRITZ AG, GE Renewable Energy, Canyon Hydro, Mavel,a.s., Gilbert Gilkes & Gordon Ltd., Voith, SNC-Lavalin, Toshiba, BHEL, and HNAC Technology Co.

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