Although the Korean peninsula has a few rivers flowing west and south, which seem advantageous to hydropower generation, there are significant challenges. There are high seasonal variations in the weather and most of the rainfall occurs in the summer. Installed hydropower capacity is about 6,489 MW and annual hydropower generation is some 7,273 GWh as of 2018. The hydropower fleet comprises 1,789 MW of pure hydropower and a further 4,700 MW of pumped storage.
Today, as the potential for conventional hydropower generation is almost fully exploited, Korea is focusing on additional hydro resources, such as tidal energy power generation. South Korea has already built the largest tidal power plant in the world at Sihwa Lake. This tidal lake power plant has a total capacity of 254 MW with an annual power generation of 543 GWh. It is managed and operated by K-water, a government agency that develops and manages water resources and water supply facilities in Korea. It is still a lighthouse project for ocean energy exploitation worldwide.