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Hydrological management of a heavily dammed river basin: the Mi–o-Sil


  • Juan A. A–el

    () (University of Oxford, Universidade de Vigo and Economics for Energy)

  • Mohcine Bakhat

    () (Economics for Energy)

  • Xavier Labandeira

    () (Economics for Energy, Rede (Universidade de Vigo) and European University Institute.)


We herein research the potential environmental impacts of the management of dams in the Mi–o-Sil river basin on the natural flow of their rivers. The Mi–o-Sil is a transnational river basin in the north-western Iberian Peninsula, and is managed by Spanish authorities. The basin is heavily managed with more than 100 dams, which in the main are used exclusively for hydropower generation. For the period of this study (1978-2012), we analyze the repercussions of the liberalization of the Spanish energy market in 1998. Our results show that the dams in the Mi–o-Sil river basin years had no influence on the natural river flows over the period of interest. Moreover, despite being used so heavily for hydropower, the liberalization of the Spanish energy market did not increase the degree of intervention in river flows. Indeed for three reservoirs in particular the correlation between inflow and outflow improved. It is also clear that for the reservoirs considered, the mean water storage and monthly inflows were lower during 1998-2012 than during 1978-1997.

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  • Juan A. A–el & Mohcine Bakhat & Xavier Labandeira, 2013. "Hydrological management of a heavily dammed river basin: the Mi–o-Sil," Working Papers 03-2014, Economics for Energy.
  • Handle: RePEc:efe:wpaper:03-2014

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alberto Gago & Xavier Labandeira & Xiral López Otero, 2014. "A Panorama on Energy Taxes and Green Tax Reforms," Hacienda Pública Española, IEF, vol. 208(1), pages 145-190, March.
    2. IIMI, Atsushi, 2007. "Estimating global climate change impacts on hydropower projects : applications in India, Sri Lanka and Vietnam," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4344, The World Bank.
    3. Lehner, Bernhard & Czisch, Gregor & Vassolo, Sara, 2005. "The impact of global change on the hydropower potential of Europe: a model-based analysis," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(7), pages 839-855, May.
    4. Byman Hamududu & Aanund Killingtveit, 2012. "Assessing Climate Change Impacts on Global Hydropower," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(2), pages 1-18, February.
    5. Pierre Mukheibir, 2013. "Potential consequences of projected climate change impacts on hydroelectricity generation," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 121(1), pages 67-78, November.
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    More about this item


    water management; reservoirs (surface) dams; hydroclimatology; systems operation and management;

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