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Hydro Equipment Association forms European branch

Members of the Hydro Equipment Association (HEA) and other European hydropower equipment suppliers met June 1 in Brussels to form the Hydro Equipment Association Europe (HEA-E), dedicated to strengthening hydropower's presence on the continent.

HEA and the International Hydropower Association (IHA) previously have focused efforts on improving hydropower's image on a global scale. As a result, HEA said, insufficient attention has been given to activities of the European Commission. HEA said the European Commission has hindered hydropower's role in meeting goals of the Kyoto Protocol, which is intended to stem global warming.

HEA has cited the commission's preference for small hydro and its linking of large hydro to the World Commission on Dams' criteria for sustainability, rather than more recent rules of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which refer to World Bank Safeguard Policies and the IHA's Sustainability Guidelines.

"We are confident that, with HEA-E, the interests of all hydro equipment suppliers in the European Union can be represented much better," said Jean-Pierre Corbet, who will serve on the HEA Board representing the European branch.

HEA-E brings together founding HEA members Alstom Power Hydro of France, Voith Siemens Hydro Power Generation of Germany, and VA Tech Hydro/Andritz of Austria with smaller European equipment suppliers, including Mecamidi of France, Litostroj of Slovenia, and Stellba of Germany.

Additionally, the HEA-E pledged to work with the European Small Hydro Association and the European Renewable Energy Council to directly represent the interests of the entire hydropower industry on a European Union level.

For information, contact the Hydro Equipment Association, E-mail: info@thehea.org; Internet: www.thehea.org.

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