Computer Model for Small-Scale Hydropower Policy Analysis

by Paul H. Kirshen, (A.M.ASCE), Asst. Prof.; Dept. of Civ. Engrg., Virginia Polytechnic Inst. and State Univ., Blacksburg, Va. 24061,
Jeffrey S. Amlin, Research Scientist; Battelle Columbus Labs., Columbus, Ohio 43201,

Serial Information: Journal of the Water Resources Planning and Management Division, 1981, Vol. 107, Issue 1, Pg. 61-76

Document Type: Journal Paper

Abstract: A computer simulation model of the obstacles and incentives to the development of small-scale hydropower in New England is presented. It serves as an effective communication tool between analysts and policymakers, helping them understand the implication of policy recommendations to increase small-scale hydropower development. Only four of the factors affecting development are included in the model: economics, licensing, construction, and retirement. From a financial point of view, the most promising developers are municipalities and investor-owned utilities. In the year 2000, it may be feasible to develop sites costing approximately double the present costs. Small-scale hydropower will generally be developed now only if developers are willing to accept risks. The inflationary effects of licensing and the complexity of the process might be the major disincentives associated with licensing.

Subject Headings: Computer models | Computer analysis | Hydro power | Hydrologic models | Scale models | Model analysis | Licensure and certification | Economic factors | Construction management | Simulation models | North America | New England | United States

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