OREANDA-NEWS. February 9, 2012. A Russian-Finnish conference on the subject of Development of Mini Hydropower Generation in the Republic of Karelia took pace in Helsinki. On the part of Karelia among its participanmts there were Valentin Luntsevich, Deputy Head of the Republic of Karelia and Minister of Economic Development, Heikki Yli-Kovero, chief advisor to Oy Vesirakentaja, and Alexey Vinogradov, managing director of Nord Hydro JSC, the banking sector representatives.

The goal of the conference was exchange of experience in the field of technologies of more effective utilization of the hydroenergy potential of small rivers.

In the course of work participants discussed implementation of the project of reconstruction and construction of minihydro power plants on rivers running within the territories of Finland and the Republic of Karelia. As Alexey Vinogradov said, the main task of the project for Karelia is increasing of energy security of the region and, accordingly, to lower dependence on monopolistic producers of electrical energy.

Minister of Economic Development of Karelia Valentin Luntsevich also has commented on results of meetings in Finland: The Government of the republic is quite interested to continue construction of minihydro power plants in the region. We are ready to consider opportunities of participation of Finnish companies in the project and offers on ways of project crediting on the part of the Finnish party, and on the part of Russia. In the long term prospect there is implementation of projects of construction of 3 minihydro power plants in Karelia and the opportunity to receive about 80 Megawatt of additional electric power within the next 5 years.

Within the framework of the conference its participants have visited the Finnish design company FMC GROUP, one of the leaders in design of civil, industrial and energy facilities, including hydraulic engineering constructions and minihydro power plants where a laser country scanning tool and 3D-modelling of objects are used at the heart of engineering.

In Tampere, participants of the conference have met with administration of ANDRITZ Hydro Oy manufacturing hydraulic turbines, have visited industrial shops and a laboratory for modelling and research of designed turbines. In Vaasa they have visited the enterprise of Vaasa Engineering Oy manufacturing generators and equipment for automation of hydro power plants; as well as ABB Oy which manufactures system generators for hydro power plants.

Currently, with the support of the Government of the Republic of Karelia Nord Hydro JSC has accomplished a pilot project of Laskela minihydro power plant. In the investment portfolio of the company there's about fifty more power plants in territory of the region.