The Belenergo electricity generator in Belarus plans to increase the total generating capacity of the country’s hydroelectric power plants to 210MW by 2020, according to the Interfax news agency.

Under the state programme for hydroelectric power development, Belarus will commission 24 hydro plants in the period from 2003 to 2020, including 16 new plants and eight rehabilitated plants. In 2003, Belarus rehabilitated two hydro plants and completed four plants, including the Lepel project, which has the capacity to generate 2MkWh per year of electricity. This year will see the start of construction of the 27MW Polotsk plant, the first plant in a 138MW cascade that will also include the Beshenkovichi and Verkhnedvinsk hydro plants. In 2005, Belarus will commission another five hydro plants.

Annual production by Belarus’ hydroelectric power plants has varied widely from 17MkWh to 28MkWh in recent years.