Sustainable Hydropower is Essential to Achieving Sarawak’s Development and Net Zero Goals

4 JANUARY 2023

Sustainable hydropower is an essential foundation for Sarawak’s continued development through the provision of clean, green, modern, and affordable energy, to meet its climate goals.

Sarawak Energy’s Batang Ai, Bakun and Murum hydropower plants provide reliable, competitive tariffed and clean electricity to Sarawak supporting domestic and industrial customers as well as neighbouring West Kalimantan. These projects have also delivered essential infrastructure for local communities, improving healthcare, education, and employment opportunities.

Electricity demand is increasing rapidly against supply from these hydropower plants and to meet Sarawak’s net zero ambitions, more hydropower capacity is needed urgently. Sarawak Energy is meeting this with the new Baleh hydropower project, due for completion in 2027. This project is providing better roads, jobs, and other benefits for local communities.

To deliver this sustainably, Sarawak Energy has been working with the International Hydropower Association to train its staff to use the internationally recognised Hydropower Sustainability Standard’s Tools. Seventy-five staff have been trained as certified users of the Tools. In addition, 23 staff are now recognised as accredited assessors of the Tools, providing a higher level of expert knowledge and demonstrating Sarawak Energy’s high commitment to sustainability. The company will seek to achieve certification of the project under the Hydropower Sustainability Standard.

Eddie Rich, Chief Executive of IHA said:

“Sarawak Energy’s consistent commitment to hydropower sustainability training is a beacon to other companies and essential to Sarawak’s economic development. The company has invested huge time and resources to ensure staff are well trained in sustainability.”

International Hydropower Association

The International Hydropower Association (IHA) is a non-profit membership organisation and the global voice for sustainable hydropower. As an association, we believe that all new hydropower projects should be developed and operated responsibly and sustainably. It has almost 100 members who have operations in over 120 countries and collectively represent over a third of hydropower installed capacity globally.

IHA's mission is to advance sustainable hydropower by building and sharing knowledge on its role in renewable energy systems, responsible freshwater management and climate change solutions.

We seek to deliver on our mission through advocacy, research and policy initiatives and championing sustainable good practices.

The Hydropower Sustainability Standard

The Hydropower Sustainability Standard is an independent international certification scheme, which measures minimum levels of good practice in twelve sustainability topics from biodiversity and indigenous peoples to water quality and climate change mitigation. Developed by a multistakeholder group comprised of industry, environmental and social NGOs, multilateral banks and civil society organisations, the Standard provides a framework to incentivise sustainable hydropower projects and improve less sustainable developments.

Find out more about the Standard