Uzbekistan > Impacts by Sector > Energy
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The Uzbek energy sector is linked to climate variability and change in numerous ways. On the one hand, global energy production is a strong contributor to the drivers of climate change, namely through the emission of greenhouse gases. Additionally, the energy sector is also exposed to the diverse impacts of climate variability and change through changes in the energy supply (e.g. disruption of operations and distribution) and demand (growing populations and evolving power needs). The consequences can be complex, yet they are often both positive and negative.
Some of the most direct impacts that climate change might have on the energy sector in Uzbekistan are listed below:
Fossil fuels require water for cooling. An increase in the temperature of the water bodies will inevitably cause a decrease in cooling capacity. Furthermore, water discharged into the environment from the cooling systems will result in a higher temperature, thus increasing the risk to the natural environment. It is expected that the energy required for cooling will increase as much as 25%. Also, a reduction in generation effectivity and transmission capacity are anticipated.
More precipitation will mean more water in the rivers and increase the potential for hydropower. However, the occurrence of more extreme precipitation means that reservoirs will need to increase their ability to buffer dangerous floods, thus reducing the overall efficiency of hydropower schemes.
Due to the increased risk of flooding, normal operation levels will have to be lowered, thus reducing the overall production efficiency of hydro energy schemes. Furthermore, flood risks may hinder energy transmission and transportation. Additionally, more intense flooding will result in greater sediment transport, water turbidity and the wear-and-tear of mechanical equipment.
Droughts limit the availability of water required for cooling fossil fuel plants, thus reducing overall energy production. To account for more frequent droughts, reservoirs will need to retain more water, which will affect hydro power production.
Energy in Uzbekistan may expect decreased cooling capacity for fossil energy. Hydropower may experience a temporary gain in productivity as a result of glacier melt, but offset in the medium-term by more heavy precipitation in the mountainous areas and related buffer capacity. In Navoy and the eastern provinces, especially Navoy, Kashkandarya and Surkhondarya, the transmission capacity will be negatively influenced by hotter temperatures.