Jostedal is a 288 MW hydroelectric power plant, fully owned by Statkraft, located in western Norway. The project was licensed in 1984, and commissioned in 1989.
The assessment was carried out over the period July to October 2012 using the operation tool of the Hydropower Sustainability Assessment Protocol. The Protocol assesses 20 topics and assigns scores for each between 1 and 5, with 5 representing Proven Best Practice and 3 representing Basic Good Practice.
Jostedal has low adverse environmental and social impacts, but there are specific issues of concern to local stakeholders. These include: fish passage and spawning in the Jostedøla River; decreasing water levels in a small pond, Vivatjønni, near to the main reservoir, Styggevatn; reduced flows in tributary streams downstream of intakes; timing of the opening (from snow and ice) of access roads to the Styggevatn area; the potential danger at the quarry site adjacent to Styggevatn; and sedimentation affecting localised flood risk.
The project provides significant social and economic benefits to the locality, especially flood protection and the generation of revenues that are used to provide benefits to the local population.
These issues are reflected in the findings of the assessment, and in a range of high scores that summarise the findings. Jostedal meets Proven Best Practice on eleven out of seventeen topics assessed using the Protocol: Governance; Hydrological Resource; Asset Reliability and Efficiency; Infrastructure Safety; Financial Viability; Project Benefits; Project-Affected Communities and Livelihoods; Labour and Working Conditions; Cultural Heritage; Public Health; and Water Quality. Jostedal meets or exceeds Basic Good Practice on all six remaining topics.