News

Energy Access Reports – September 2017

The State of Electricity Access Report (SEAR) 2017, ESMAP

This report examines the critical role of energy toward the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and provides a snapshot of the status of electricity access worldwide, based on the recent Global Tracking Framework. It explores how countries can create a conducive environment for a transformative electricity access roll out, how clean energy fits into the picture, and how emerging and innovative service delivery models can accelerate progress on meeting the goals.

It also delves into topics ranging from electricity planning, human capital, and gender, to climate change, energy efficiency, and results-based financing with the goal of prompting governments, donors, the private sector, civil society organizations, and practitioners to develop solutions to close the electricity access gap by integrating lessons learned from countries that have successfully expanded electricity access and through insights drawn from innovative business and delivery models.

The report contains a special feature on energy access & health penned by the UN Foundation and WHO.

Energizing Finance: Scaling and Refining Finance in Countries with Large Energy Access Gaps, Sustainable Energy for All

At the 72nd UN General Assembly, Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) and partners launched new research that, for the first time, tracks and analyzes finance flows for electricity and clean cooking access in 20 countries across Africa and Asia with significant access gaps.

The new Energizing Finance report series reveals that current flow of finance for energy access and clean cooking will not achieve global goals for delivering universal access by 2030. Yet the data also shows that by scaling and refining finance strategies, we can reach more people, more affordably, with sustainable energy.

The reports – produced in partnership with the World Bank Group, the African Development Bank, Climate Policy Initiative, E3 Analytics and Practical Action Consulting – look at: the amount and type of international and domestic finance flowing to these countries for energy access, including a deep dive into the domestic finance flowing in Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Kenya; how effectively and quickly that finance is being disbursed for projects; and the finance needs and challenges of solar enterprise and other renewable energy businesses operating in these countries.

The series of reports are bought together by an overarching policy paper authored by SEforALL which offers key insights and recommendations to support governments and development finance institutions boost finance levels – and use it more effectively.

Turning on the Lights: Transcending Energy Poverty Through the Power of Women Entrepreneurs, Santa Clara University’s Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship

In 2016 a research team from Santa Clara University’s Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship undertook survey research with Solar Sister to examine the effects of solar lantern use on users’ health, education, time allocation, household savings, income generation, and increased agency. The research team conducted a 53-question survey in more than 20 villages across five regions in Tanzania, with research assistants providing English-Swahili translation.

This research report examines the knock-on effect of Solar Sister’s woman-centered last-mile solar distribution model on the consumer. Researchers found that solar lanterns sold by Solar Sister’s entrepreneurs improve children’s education, lower risks of accidents, improve health, increase household finances, help grow current businesses and kickstart new ones.

Poor People’s Energy Outlook 2017, Practical Action

The 2017 edition of the Poor People’s Energy Outlook (PPEO) considers how to best finance national integrated energy access plans for Bangladesh, Kenya and Togo based on the PPEO 2016 analysis. The report looks at the mix of technologies and funding required to achieve national and global energy access goals; and the roles of civil society and the private and public sectors in making this a reality. A briefing paper summarizing key findings and recommendations from the PPEO 2017 report is now available, and the full report will be launched in the coming weeks.

Powering Primary Healthcare through Solar in India, CEEW and Oxfam

In India, Primary Health Centers (PHCs) ensure last-mile delivery of healthcare services at the village level. However, one in every two PHCs in India, and one in every three in Chhattisgarh, is either un-electrified or suffers from irregular power supply. This extent of power deficiency across PHCs could hamper the provision of healthcare services in the country. Still, the impact of access to electricity on healthcare service delivery has rarely been explored in detail in India.

A comprehensive questionnaire on health and energy was administered to a total of 147 PHCs (83 solar and 64 non-solar) in 15 districts of Chhattisgarh. The synergy between access to electricity and delivery of healthcare services was explored by classifying the PHCs into two sub-groups: (a) power-deficit PHCs: defined as PHCs with regular power supply of 20 hours or less a day; and (b) non-power-deficit PHCs: defined as PHCs with regular power supply of more than 20 hours a day.

Significant opportunities exist to simultaneously address the (often competing) goals of energy access, energy security, resource management, and health outcomes. Solar for health is one such opportunity. Chhattisgarh provides evidence to scale this intervention to meet the national targets for both health and energy.

Double dividend: power and agriculture nexus in Sub-Saharan Africa, ESMAP

Combining agricultural load with other household and commercial power demand can increase the feasibility of extending the grid or creating opportunities for independent power producers and mini-grid operators. Drawing on a suite of case studies, this study offers insights on what it will take to operationalize the opportunities and address the challenges for power-agriculture integration in Africa.

Power Africa Annual Report: Fourth Year in Review, USAID

Now in its fourth year, Power Africa is laying the foundation for sustainable economic growth in Africa while creating opportunities for American businesses as it makes progress towards its goal of increasing installed generation capacity by 30,000 megawatts (MW) and adding 60 million new electricity connections by 2030. Since its inception, Power Africa has facilitated the financial close of 80 power transactions valued at more than $14.5 billion, and expected to generate more than 7,200 MW of power in sub-Saharan Africa. In addition, Power Africa has facilitated more than 10 million electrical connections, bringing electricity to more than 50 million people.

The report also highlights the role of women in Africa’s power sector, chronicling the contributions of select members of Power Africa’s Women in African Power (WiAP) network. It includes an executive letter from the Honorable Irene Muloni, Minister for Energy and Minerals in Uganda, as well as profiles of women strengthening Africa’s power sector.

Global Kerosene Subsidies: An Obstacle to Energy Efficiency and Development, Evan Mills

The analysis developed in this article finds that kerosene is used in 173 countries, at a cost to consumers of $43.4B/y, $60.3B/y including direct economic subsidies, and $77.2B/y including certain externalities. Despite low world oil prices, direct economic subsidies for kerosene were $18.4B in 2013, and $34.7B including environmental externalities. These values correspond to 72% and 56% of total kerosene costs being passed through to consumers, respectively.

Defining subsidies at this level of granularity is useful for pinpointing policy issues and opportunities. Promoting a transition to energy efficient off-grid energy services is one of the most cost-effective ways of reducing dependency on subsidies. However, the very presence of subsidies undercuts this process by diluting market price signals and rendering energy efficiency investments less cost-effective, while competing with other social and development-focused budgetary needs.

Kerosene subsidies are additionally counterproductive because the emerging technologies they impede (e.g., improved lighting and cook stoves) also improve productivity, safety, and quality of life. Forty-five countries – many in the developing world – have priced kerosene such that there are no direct subsidies, and twenty-two have done so even when accounting for environmental externalities, suggesting the practice is economically and politically feasible.

Crowd Power: Can the Crowd Close the Financing Gap?, Energy4Impact

Crowdfunding for energy access related projects and off-grid energy businesses grew from $3.4 million in 2015 to $8.7 million in 2016. Debt and equity campaigns accounted for more than 90%

of the market; and raised 53% and 39% respectively. While crowdfunding for energy access is a small component of overall fundraising for off-grid energy companies operating in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia, various forms of crowdfunding have a role to play at this juncture.

This report highlights fundraising trends across donation, reward, debt, and equity crowdfunding; and shows how non-profits and social enterprises are utilizing crowdfunding to close the financing gap experienced by many early stage companies, and non-profits. Energy access related donation, debt, and equity crowdfunding grew steadily in 2016; while reward crowdfunding activity declined.

The Crowd Power program, which this report shares learnings from, contributed a total of $250,000 across 16 energy access related campaigns in 2016, which in turn raised $1.5 million for projects expected to provide 62,500 people with energy access.

An Evidence Review: How Affordable is Off-grid Energy Access in Africa?, Acumen

According to this report, poor households tend to spend more money for energy access as compared to wealthier households. However, the consumers are price sensitive and want financing options to make the energy products accessible but are not always financially literate. Although access to solar is increasing rapidly it is highly concentrated in a few countries.

Tuned In: Television and civic engagement in off-grid society, MKOPA Solar

This report looks into the role of solar television in the off-grid economy. The report includes findings from a survey conducted among 250 customers of M-Kopa in Kenya, who have acquired a solar television for the first time. According to the report, 90% of the solar television owners feel that they are more politically aware since getting the television. The customers mention news/educational programs as main reason for buying a solar television followed by entertainment programs.

The Fight for Light: Improving Energy Access through Digital Payments, UNCDF

This publication highlights the role of digital payments and inclusive digital ecosystems in achieving sustainable energy for all. It examines three major barriers to expanding energy access and argues how digital payments could help to overcome them. The barriers include a) lack of cost recovery for grid extension and mini-grid projects, b) high up-front cost of energy access and c) lack of private investment as well as well-targeted subsidies for renewable projects.

Solar Resource and Photovoltaic Potential in Indonesia, ESMAP

This report presents results of the solar resource mapping and photovoltaic power potential evaluation, as a part of a technical assistance, implemented by the World Bank, for the renewable energy development in Indonesia. The study has two objectives: (i)Improve the awareness and knowledge of resources for solar energy technologies by producing a comprehensive countrywide data set and maps based on satellite and meteorological modelling.

Business Environment Constraints in Mozambique’s Renewable Energy Sector: Solar PV Systems and Improved Cook Stoves, Business Environment Reform Facility and DfiD

This report was prepared in response to DFID Mozambique’s request for the Business Environment Reform Facility (BERF) to analyze business environment constraints faced by private sector actors wishing to enter the off-grid renewable energy market, specifically for Improved Cook Stoves (ICS), Pico Solar Systems, Solar Home Systems (SHS) and Green Mini-Grids (GMG). The report reviews three issues: i) the policies/strategies, laws and regulations that govern investments in Mozambique’s Photovoltaic (PV) and ICS sectors; ii) the organizations and institutions that operate and affect these sectors and iii) specific business environment issues that affect the performance of these sectors. Interviews were held with a range of stakeholders to identify the binding constraints to sector growth. The report concludes with recommendations on how to overcome such sectoral constraints.

Field Report: Market Attractiveness Analysis and Demand Assessment for M-Kopa Solar Systems in Mozambique, M-Kopa and GreenLight 

The Department for International Development (DFID) supported M-KOPA in undertaking an assessment of the Mozambican market in March 2016, through the review of the existing literature as well as stakeholder interviews.

As part of its assessment of the Mozambican market, M-KOPA wishes to further evaluate the potential demand for its solar products, assuming that the main drivers of demand are willingness to pay and ability to pay.

Greenlight Consult, Lda, a Mozambican company, has carried out a qualitative and quantitative field study looking at the following aspects in detail:

a) Household energy habits and expenditure;

b) Awareness and understanding of solar products;

c) Awareness and usability of mobile payment systems;

d) Market willingness to pay for m-kopa services; and

e) Other energy related behavioral aspects.