The work packages 1 to 3 are done in closed collaboration with the Chinese partners. The main focus here is the evaluation of socioeconomic and ecological aspects with special emphasis on climate change. From the German side, these aspects are bundled for the development of a holistic approach of a sustainable rating system including environmental impact assessments of small hydropower plants. A key role plays the accounting for greenhouse gas emissions, also for recognizing HAPPI as a CDM project. For this, a base methodology for calculating the "certified emission credits (CER)" adaptable to the new SHSF program should be developed - an important part of the project particularly for the chamber of foreign trade in Greater China.
In the work packages 4 to 8, the catchment area based on hydrological and technical aspects of water turbines (site selection, construction and operation) is explored. In working package 4, a hydrological analysis of the rainfall runoff into the river catchment, which is an important input parameter for site selection of the hydropower plants, is done. Furthermore, there is some research on land use and climate change. Working package 5 includes a site evaluation and power optimization of hydropower plants under hydrological, hydraulic, ecological and economic aspects. For a pilot site study, hydraulic conditions in the reservoir area and in the near field of the hydropower plant are carried out. In work package 6, the main focus is on technical dimensioning and construction innovations for an optimized design of hydropower plants, including economical and environmental aspects as well as the typification of building parts. In work package 7, methods for an optimized operation of standalone hydropower plants and barrage cascades are developed. A specific potential for efficiency improvements lies in the optimized management of hydropower plant cascades. The energy management for an optimal grid integration and the merging of several hydropower plants into a combined virtual power plant achieving economical and technical benefits are the main focus of work package 8. In work package 9, the development of financial strategies and operator models for hydropower plants is analyzed. From the perspective of the Chinese Ministry of Water Ressources this is a very important part, because for the implementation of the SHSF program a co-financing of banks is required. In that case, the results of HAPPI are an important basis for decisions of potential investors.
The work packages mentioned above are closely interconnected with each other and provide finally the basics for the applications which will be implemented in the model regions. This is the main focus of the work packages 10 to 14. In work package 10, a pilot monitoring system for measuring relevant parameters (water quality, discharge situation of the watercourse, groundwater situation, soil hydrology and meteorology, greenhouse gases) should be enhanced and implemented. The goal thereby is to find the relevant measure parameters for the design, operation and evaluation of small hydropower plants. In work package 11, an integrated guideline (see also Planning tool) for small hydropower plants is developed, which includes planning and operation of the scientific methods. Furthermore, the results of the sustainability analysis will be included into that guideline. In work package 12, the newly developed operation strategies for small hydropower plants and hydropower plants cascades will be implemented in model region 1. In the same region as part of work package 13, an ex-post evaluation of the existing hydropower plants is done. work package 14 includes the application of the research results in an available model region 2 and as preparation for a model region 3.
The necessary involvement of the corresponding users as well as the transfer of the HAPPI knowledge to scientific, administrative and industrial clients is part of the work packages 15 to 17 (Keywords: capacity building, governance, project management).