EC Symposium 2023
Alessandro Palmieri, Consultant ITCOLD:

Alessandro Palmieri, Consultant ITCOLD:

Birth Date:                              29 July 1950

Nationality:                             Italian

Education:                               M. Eng. Cum Laude in Civil and Hydraulic Engineering, University                                                        of Rome, 1974.

Professional membership:       ICOLD and United States Society on Dams (USSD).

Experience Summary

Alessandro Palmieri has 48 years of experience worldwide in water infrastructure planning and development. He is internationally recognised as an authority on water resources infrastructure. Included in the list of the 60 most influential people ever in the dams and hydropower industry (October 2009). Awarded ICOLD’s honorary membership in recognition of services provided to the international dam society (May 2010). Awarded the India Power Award (November 2010) as one of the three top international actors in the hydropower business in the year.

He has been the Lead Dam Specialist in the World Bank from 1997 to 2013, with overall responsibility on technical aspects of the Institution’s portfolio of dams, including over 130 projects, with direct engagement in 86 water infrastructure operations. Before joining the Bank, Mr Palmieri worked in the private sector for 22 years. During his career, he has been involved in the full development cycle of dams and hydro projects in 70 countries, in every continent, working for major international institutions, private consulting firms and an international industrial group specialising in the construction of large, complex civil infrastructure. He is currently an independent adviser on water infrastructure internationally.

Professional Experience

From October 2018:  Independent Water Infrastructure Adviser

World Bank:

  • climate resilient flood mitigation project.
  • national program on dam safety and service reliability (portfolio of 235 rural dams), institutional training, community involvement in dam surveillance.
  • Water Security and Resilience Program (rehabilitation of 5 dams).
  • preparation of Guidance Notes on the application of Risk-Informed Dam Safety management to World Bank’s operation., and preparation of associated Training Program.
  • India, Addressing Development Challenges in the Hydropower Sector.
  • Bhutan, Dorjilung HPP (1125 MW) identification mission.
  • Perú, Potential Failure Modes analysis for Poechos dam and multipurpose reservoir.
  • Bhutan, formulation of dam safety guidelines and standard bidding documents for hydropower development.
  • Pakistan, Sindh Resilience Project, expansion of a large-scale groundwater recharge programme in an arid zone of Sindh.
  • addressing operation and maintenance of existing reservoirs and implementation planning of Kameniza water supply system.
  • , technical assistance to KSA on management of existing dams and planning new reservoirs in the Asir Region.
  • Zambia, review the conditions of a portfolio of 12 dams, partly built under the WRDP; advise on priority measures required to safeguard people and infrastructure.
  • Lebanon, design and construction of Bisri Dam for Beirut water supply augmentation; review and optimization of water supply system, technical review of bidding processes on pipeline and tunnelling works.
  • Myanmar, Swa Chaung Dam safety assessment and reconstruction planning; Potential Failure Modes analysis of a portfolio of dams.
  • India, Hirakud Dam, risk-informed approach application to safety improvement.

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

  • Lao PDR, fact finding mission for re-financing the Xe Kaman hydropower cascade (572 MW).
  • Tajikistan, due diligence for investment lending to Rogun hydroelectric project (3,600 MW, 335 m high Central Core Rockfill Dam).
  • , Dak Drinh HPP (125 MW, 94m high RCC dam) technical and operational assistance on dam safety aspects.
  • Corporate, Risk Assessment of operations proposed for investment lending.

Inter-American Development Bank

  • Colombia, Ituango HPP (2456 MW, 230m high Central Core Rockfill Dam). Chair of Independent Advisory Panel to IDB-Invest.

Asian Development Bank

  • Samoa, Alaoa Multipurpose, 60m high RCC Dam for flood mitigation and water supply. Chair of Independent Panel of Experts.
  • Training seminar for ADB staff on “Dam Safety: Entry Point to Water Resources Development”.

United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS)

  • Formulation of recommendations on how to improve requirements on Dam Safety. Preparation of Guidance Note to train UNOPS teams/personnel in implementing the recommendations, including community involvement in dam safety management.

United Nations Development Program (UNDP)

  • Al Lith Dam (concrete faced rockfill, 44m H), detailed design review and advise to MEWA (KSA’s Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture) on options for project completion.

J.P. Elektroprivreda, Sarajevo

  • Bosnia Herzegovina, Vranduk run-of-the-river HPP (20 MW), expert witness in ICC (International Chamber of Commerce) arbitration process.

             ITCOLD (Italian Committee on Large Dams), member of the Scientific Committee, chair              of working group on “Existing Multipurpose Dams”.

October 2013 to September 2018:

Salini-Impregilo SpAWater Infrastructure Adviser

  • Koysha HPP, Ethiopia (2,150 MW, 174m high RCC dam).
  • Snowy 2.0 Pumped Storage Project, Australia (2,000 MW, 27 km underground waterways).
  • Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam Project (6,000 MW, 10.5 Mm3 RCC dam, 17 Mm3 CFRD).
  • Nenskra HPP, Georgia (280 MW, 145m high CFRD).
  • Rogun HPP, Tajikistan (3,600 MW, 335 m high Central Core Rockfill Dam).
  • Gibe III HPP, Ethiopia (1,870 MW, 250m high RCC Dam).

ICOLD (International Commission on Large Dams)

  • Chairperson of Committee on “Multipurpose Water Storage” (2013-2016).

World Bank – Consultant

  • , enhancement of dam safety management at 4 irrigation dams.
  • Iraq, post-earthquake safety assessment of Derbandikhan and Dokan dams.
  • , national workshop “Dam Safety appreciation through Operator Engagement”.
  • Sindh Resilience Project, design of water harvesting weirs for groundwater recharge.
  • , technical assistance to the national Dam Safety Regulator for the implementation of a national dam safety program on a portfolio of over 3,000 large dams.
  • Bulgaria Municipal Infrastructure Development Project: construction of two rockfill dams, and rehabilitation of a concrete buttress dam; technical review.

1997 to 2013      World Bank, Washington D.C.

World Bank experience, as the Institution’s Lead Dam Specialist, included a significant role in the preparation, appraisal and supervision of water infrastructure and natural hazard management projects. Operations involved 37 new dams and over 20,000MW new hydros; rehabilitation and safety assessment of over 100 existing dams and hydros; six natural hazard management operations, including Lake Sarez Risk Mitigation Project dealing with the highest natural dam in the world (600m high Usoy Dam, Eastern Pamir Range, Tajikistan).

Technical quality assurance, design review, implementation supervision, panel of experts’ orchestration, were the main tasks at project level; the full range of tasks included also environmental and social, fiduciary, and legal aspects of development lending. Training and skill enhancement programs for World Bank staff and Clients formed large part of the work program. Institutional components of projects covered training, regulatory frameworks, and policy dialogue.