Hydro Tasmania employee wins international Award for Excellence

Hydro Tasmania’s ongoing contribution to the sustainability of hydropower development and operation internationally has again been recognised with an award presented last month in China.

Dr Helen Locher, Hydro Tasmania’s principal consultant for sustainability, was presented with the 2015 Mosonyi Award for Excellence in Hydropower during the 2015 World Hydropower Congress in Beijing. Dr Locher joined Luiz Gabriel Azevedo and Jean-Étienne Klimpt as the winners of the 2015 Award.

The award is named after Emil Mosonyi, the founding president of the International Hydropower Association. Professor Mosonyi made major contributions to hydropower during his long career, and the award recognises outstanding contributions to the global hydropower sector.

Hydro Tasmania CEO Steve Davy said Dr Locher was a deserving recipient, noting her 25 years’ experience working on environmental, social and sustainability issues in many contexts. Mr Davy singled out a significant contribution during a three-year secondment to the International Hydropower Association.

“Helen coordinated a multi-sectoral forum with representatives from developing and developed countries, environmental and social NGOs, commercial and development banks, and the hydropower industry,” said Mr Davy.

“She played an instrumental role in bringing diverse and strongly held views into alignment on the structure and content of a globally-applicable sustainability assessment framework for hydropower development and operation.”

“The resulting Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol is now widely used and endorsed internationally, and guides the sustainable development and management of hydropower schemes in many countries.”

Dr Locher’s work with the IHA followed nine years of developing and leading programs for Hydro Tasmania to address environmental and social issues relating to its operations. More recently, Dr Locher has consulted internationally on significant sustainable hydropower initiatives, often as a team leader, and including undertaking sustainability assessments of hydropower projects around the world.

“I am delighted to accept the reward in recognition of both my own efforts and those of Hydro Tasmania.

“What I have been able to achieve was only possible through the efforts and support of so many others. This award is a great statement about the importance of sustainability both to Hydro Tasmania and to the global hydropower industry,” she said.

In applauding Helen’s recognition, Mr Davy also acknowledged the work of Andrew Scanlon, who led Hydro Tasmania’s environment and sustainability efforts for two decades and played an instrumental role in the IHA’s sustainability initiatives.

The IHA works to build and share knowledge on the role of hydropower in renewable energy systems, responsible freshwater management and climate change solutions. It has members in more than 80 countries, including many of the world’s big hydropower companies.

Hydro Tasmania is an IHA Sustainability Partner. Sustainability Partners are hydropower industry members taking a leading role in promoting the continuous improvement of hydropower sustainability performance, including through applying the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol.

Hydro Tasmania’s specialist power and water consulting business, Entura, is an active participant in the IHA’s sustainability efforts and provides a range of specialist consulting services relating to hydropower sustainability to clients around the globe.

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