Prof. Wenzhe Tang
Holistic Hydropower Development
Wenzhe Tang is a Professor in Dept. of Hydraulic Engineering and Deputy Head of Construction Management Dept., Tsinghua University. He has obtained his Bachelor degree in hydropower engineering from Tsinghua University, China, and has completed his PhD in engineering management from The University of Melbourne, Australia. His works have been published in both international and domestic reputed journals such as Energy, Renewable Energy, Nature, Sustainability, Natural Hazards, International Journal of Project Management, Journal of Management in Engineering-ASCE, Journal of Construction Engineering and Management-ASCE, Journal of Performance of Constructed Facilities-ASCE, Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice-ASCE, Journal of Asian Architecture and Building Engineering, and Complexity. He has been serving as the Deputy Chairman of Standardization Committee, Asia Water Council, and had been Chairman of the “International Conference on Energy Engineering and Environmental Protection 2017. He has provided consultant services for top industrial companies regarding hydropower development and international project management.
To meet the increasing demand for renewable energy, and reduce climate change and acidification arising from using fossil fuels, hydropower fits for the implementation of long-term sustainable energy policy. A key unanswered question is how to align the multiple or conflicting objectives of hydropower development from a holistic perspective. We presented solutions to sustainable hydropower development on three governance levels. At the national level, there is a need to measure and understand the cascade effects of dams at river basin scale for optimizing the reservoir operation and environmental protection. Governance improvements are required to revise the environment law, update migrants’ compensation standards, reform the price of hydro-electricity, and establish an interregional transfer payment system for balancing social and environmental losses of affected areas. At the project level, it is critical to support migrants’ sustainable development, preserve indigenous culture, optimize joint operation of cascade reservoirs, mitigate geological and weather-related hazards, and enhance riverine ecosystems’ resilience. At international level, neighboring countries should establish partnering relationships to cooperatively manage the transboundary rivers associated with hydropower production, water sharing, environmental sustainability and climate change. China has rich managerial and technological experience arising from a variety of hydropower projects. The holistic hydropower development approaches in China can serve as a model for improving governance of rivers worldwide, especially in developing countries.
Renewable energy, Hydropower development, Sustainability, Governance.