United Nations has called on
businesses, governments, and
civil society to achieve Sustainable
Energy for All by 2030
New Energy Access Reports — July 2015
Digitally financed off-grid solar has transitioned from pilot scale to a diverse and substantial sub-sector of the global off-grid energy market. Today nearly 30 companies operating in at least 32 countries provide access to consumer capital for off-grid solar using digital finance, opening access to vital electricity services. Lighting Global’s new Market Report showcases the approach and challenges of two pay-as-you-go companies and their work in Kenya: SunnyMoney and M-KOPA.
In 2013, the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association (GOGLA) convened a working group on impact metrics to produce a harmonized industry standard for reporting on social impact for consistent use across the sector. At the time, there was no standard for calculating metrics in the sector and as a result different organizations use different approaches or were limited in their capacity to report/communicate on this. The use of different approaches undermines credibility of results and prevents industry-wide aggregation. Credible benchmarking is important for policy discussions, advocacy efforts, and other initiatives where robust impact figures influence sector-related support and decisions. This report proposes GOGLA impact metrics and contains detailed information on the objectives, the working group, the metrics and coefficients, and the next steps.
Powering a Home with Just 25 Watts of Solar PV: Superefficient Appliances Can Enable Expanded Off-Grid Energy Service Using Small Solar Power Systems, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Highly efficient direct current (DC) appliances have the potential to dramatically increase the affordability of off-grid solar power systems used for rural electrification in developing countries by reducing the size of the systems required. For example, the combined power requirement of a highly efficient color TV, four DC light emitting diode (LED) lamps, a mobile phone charger, and a radio is approximately 18 watts and can be supported by a small solar power system (at 27 watts peak, Wp). Price declines and efficiency advances in LED technology are already enabling rapidly increased use of small off-grid lighting systems in Africa and Asia. Similar progress is also possible for larger household-scale solar home systems that power appliances such as lights, TVs, fans, radios, and mobile phones. When super-efficient appliances are used, the total cost of solar home systems and their associated appliances can be reduced by as much as 50%. The results vary according to the appliances used with the system. These findings have critical relevance for efforts to provide modern energy services to the 1.2 billion people worldwide without access to the electrical grid and one billion more with unreliable access. However, policy and market support are needed to realize rapid adoption of super-efficient appliances.
Sustainable energy access planning: A framework, Asian Development Bank
Sustainable energy access planning (SEAP) is aimed at developing a socially inclusive energy supply system that gives both the poor and the non-poor sustainable access to at least the minimum amount of energy for their basic needs. This type of planning is also done to identify environmentally sound and climate-friendly technologies and resource options for providing energy access, and the associated investment opportunities. The proposed SEAP framework, which is discussed in this report, consists of assessments of the following: Energy poverty; Energy demand; Energy resources; Cost; Benefits; Sustainability; Affordability.
World Energy Outlook special report on Energy and Climate Change, International Energy Agency
The report offers a glimmer of good news: “The global economy grew by around 3% in 2014 but energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions stayed flat, the first time in at least 40 years that such an outcome has occurred outside economic crisis.”
In 2009, the World Bank established the Africa Renewable Energy and Access program (AFREA) to focus on the special needs of the energy sector in Africa, where limited access to modern energy constrains development and the opportunity presents itself to leapfrog to cleaner renewable energy supplies, instead of “locking in” to conventional carbon dioxide laden fossil fuels. This publication zooms in on the key regional programs that were supported: Lighting Africa, the Biomass Energy Initiative for Africa (BEIA), Africa Clean Cooking Energy Solutions (ACCES), the Gender and Energy Program, and the African Electrification Initiative (AEI). One chapter also documents the results of a successful national program—the Rwanda Sector-wide Approach (SWAp).
The Energy – Water – Food Nexus at Decentralized Scales, Practical Action
This publication summarizes Practical Action’s experiences with micro-hydro schemes in countries like Nepal, Peru and Zimbabwe and highlights the need for an integrated approach to energy, water and food security. The report also argues that decentralized energy services have a huge potential to deliver energy services to communities that need it.
This report recommends best practices and smart policies to enable the market uptake of off-grid lighting solutions. It was unveiled last month at the Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) annual forum, which convenes private sector, governments, energy access practitioners, off-grid lighting experts, civil society and international donors to achieve the target of universal energy access by 2030. The publication was jointly launched by UNEP, the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association (GOGLA), and the Economic Community of West African States’ (ECOWAS) Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE).
IMPACT REPORT: STATE OF THE SMALL AND GROWING BUSINESS SECTOR, Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs
This report focuses on the state of the global SGB sector, and also dives into regional trends. First, we provide an overview on intermediaries in 2014, including data on capacity development services, direct investments into SGBs, and donor funding. Next, we highlight trends and activities at ANDE’s five most established regional chapters: Brazil, Central America/Mexico, East Africa, India, and South Africa. We also expose current challenges for the sector to address, such as how to recruit and retain talent, improve entrepreneurial acceleration, and increase donor support to fulfill global development goals.
While electric-powered groundwater irrigation is quite prevalent in the world, a specific confluence of historical, policy and political factors has trapped many Indian states in a vicious spiral of declining groundwater levels, stagnant or declining agricultural productivity, deteriorating power service delivery, and bankrupt electricity utilities. This report is a significant contribution to the global debate on the vital links between water, energy and food and a step forward for anyone seeking new approaches to address and overcome this intractable problem facing the state governments, farmers and power utilities in India for decades.