European experience for Ukraine: how Ukrhydroenergo specialists learned about new approaches to water management in the Netherlands 

admin June 28, 2024
Press service of Ukrhydroenergo

The team of Ukrhydroenergo’s experts carried out the first technical mission in cooperation with the Netherlands Water Platform to improve water resource management.  The Netherlands, with its centuries of experience in balancing vulnerability to flooding and high waters and with its economic development, is one of the world's leading countries in this area. They permanently model and predict water changes to ensure human safety and promote sustainable green development.

A high-level meeting was held with the participation of Valentyn Hvozdiy (Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Ukrhydroenergo), Oleh Pashchenko (Director of Kakhovka HPP), representatives of Ukrhydroenergo's project and technical departments, Wampie Libon (Director of the Inclusive Green Growth Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands), Oleksandr Karasevych (Ambassador of Ukraine to the Netherlands), representatives of the Water Management Agency of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Kakhovka Cluster of the Netherlands Water Platform, as well as representatives of the departments of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water.

The Netherlands has offered its support in restoring not only Kakhovka hydroelectric scheme, but also - and above all - in developing a master plan for restoring the water infrastructure of Kakhovka Reservoir to ensure a sustainable development of the southern regions of Ukraine..

“The destruction of Kakhovka HPP is a serious problem that affects the energy situation in our country, as well as the environment and water supply for agriculture and industry. Restoration of this energy facility will be crucial after the de-occupation of the region. In this context, it is important to study European experience and use advanced technologies to rebuild the power plant. We look forward to fruitful cooperation with our partners in the Netherlands to speed up the restoration process and to ensure the sustainable development of the region. This visit can be considered as a starting point for high-level negotiations between the Netherlands and Ukraine regarding the restoration of energy infrastructure, opening up new prospects for bilateral cooperation”, - noted Valentyn Hvozdiy, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Ukrhydroenergo.  

This technical mission initiated the exchange of knowledge and experience in the field of hydropower and water impact, in particular in terms of the latest technologies for the processes of preparation, design, implementation and control of large-scale unique infrastructure projects related to the management of large water bodies, safety risk management of hydrotechnical facilities, as well as European practices for the evaluation, approval and financing of large hydrotechnical construction projects and project management.

First of all, Ukrhydroenergo's experts are interested in acquiring knowledge of the latest technical solutions and approaches to preparing projects with a multi-sectoral impact in order to build back better.

During the presentations and discussions, there was shown the Water Management Agency's experience in strategic planning, development and implementation of water infrastructure projects, as well as the specifics of economic, technical and financial modeling and decision-making, risk management for the construction and maintenance of dams to maximize the viable operational period and optimize costs.

While visiting the Netherlands’ longest (32 km) and oldest (over 100 years) dam, the Afsluitdijk, the team of Ukrainian hydropower experts had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with its reconstruction process, which includes raising the dam by 2 meters to prevent future flooding, construction of new structures, locks, gates and fish passage. The total cost of this project is more than EUR 1.2 billion under the DBFM contract, which includes private financing of the construction period based on a 25-year performance fee model.

The final decision was preceded by mathematical modeling and field studies in the hydraulic laboratory, which made it possible to find the optimal solution with the least environmental damage.

During the visit, Ukrainian hydropower experts also visited the laboratory of the Deltares Research Institute and got familiarized with the experience of conducting research and modeling for facilities and design solutions both in the Netherlands and other countries in Africa and Asia.