Bulletin April 2017
Selected news and information on European Energy Development Cooperation
No. 10 | April 2017
Dear EUEI Members, dear Readers,
Spring is on its way and we for one are glad to have more hours in our days to work on the wealth of topics ongoing in energy development cooperation!
A series of events will keep us busy, and we look forward to seeing you in the coming weeks in New York for the SEforALL Forum, Rome for our G7 side event, in Brussels for the RGI meeting and at the Vienna Energy Forum. As always, if you would like to showcase your activities in the Bulletin, please feel free to contact us. Additionally, if you would like to profile a project with a factsheet in the EUEI Brochure, please also contact us and we will happily support your efforts to raise awareness of European energy development cooperation.
Please also note for your diaries that the EUEI PDF Steering Group Meeting will take place in Brussels soon, with a provisional date of the 17th of May. Further details will follow and are available on request from the EUEI support team.
With kindest regards for a productive April and a restful Easter break from Brussels,
Your team of the EUEI support project, EUEI PDF
- GEF-7 Replenishment 1st Meeting; 28-30 March 2017; Rome, Italy | Event Details
- Registration opens for European Development Days 2017; 3 April; Online | Registration
- SEforALL Forum 2017; 3-5 April; New York, USA | Event Details
- C40 Financing Sustainable Cities Forum; 4 April; London, UK | Event Details
- Africa Renewable Energy Leaders’ Summit; 4-5 April; Nairobi, Kenya | Event Details
- Clean Energy Summit; 4-5 April; Accra, Ghana | Event Details
- EUEI / RES4AFRICA / Enel G7 side event; 9 April; Rome, Italy | Event Details
- G7 Energy Ministerial Meeting; 9-10 April; Rome, Italy | Event Details
- EURELECTRIC Power to the People; 19 April; Brussels, Belgium | Event Details
- 2017 Global Infrastructure Forum; 22 April; Washington D.C., USA | Event Details
- Joint Africa-EU Strategy Reference Group on Infrastructure meeting; 24-25 April; Brussels, Belgium | Request Details
- W20 Dialogue Forum with Women in Business, Science and Society; 25-26 April; Berlin, Germany | Event Details
- B20 Dialogue Forum with Business Associations; 3 May; Berlin, Germany | Event Details
- Bonn Climate Change Conference; 8-18 May; Bonn, Germany | Event Details
- EBRD Annual Meeting; 9-11 May; Nicosia, Cyprus | Event Details
- Vienna Energy Forum; 9-12 May; Vienna, Austria | Event Details
- POWER-GEN: power generation technology development conference for India & Central Asia; 17-19 May; New Delhi, India | Event Details
- Foreign Affairs Council Development; 19 May; Brussels, Belgium | Event Details
News from the European Union : Featuring the Call for Proposals on Women and Sustainable Energy and an update on the EIP
In the Spotlight : With details of the first 19 AREI projects, reports on renewables expansion and on climate finance, and a UNFCCC survey amongst developing countries on NDC implementation
Opportunities for the Private Sector : Announcing a forthcoming sector seminar on sustainable energy in EU external aid programmes for European companies
Africa Focus : With an exposé on the new AUC, developments in The Gambia and Egypt, and a report by Kofi Annan’s Africa Progress Panel
News from the Member States : Ranging from the on the Energy Globe World Awards to new Economic Development Strategies, from investments in climate funds to support for NAMA projects
Media Suggestions : Including a photo competition on smart villages, the EIB’s opinion on the European Consensus for Development, video voices on distributed renewables other tools, webinars and reports
European Commission calls for proposals on “Women and Sustainable Energy”
On the 8th of March the European Commission launched a call for proposals on “Women and Sustainable Energy”. The aim of the call is to promote the role of women in the energy sector. This goal is to be reached through enhanced job creation, better business opportunities for women and capacity development. The European Commission is providing €20 million in grants to activities which strengthen the role of women in entrepreneurship in the sustainable energy sector in developing countries.
The call for proposal as well as further information can be found here.
Deadline for applications is the 25th of April.
The European External Investment Plan takes shape
In 2016 the European Commission proposed a new European External Investment Plan (EIP) to encourage investment in Africa and contribute to sustainable development. The EIP offers a new approach and aims to leave behind traditional development assistance. The Plan consists of three pillars: An investment fund, technical assistance and a pillar for cooperation programmes and political dialogue. To ensure its ambitious impact is achieved, the EIP still needs to address a number of challenges, including weaknesses which have limited private investments in the past. It also requires that synergies are developed with other European initiatives, including the German Marshall Plan for Africa, the OECD’s development effectiveness agenda as well as the African Union’s Agenda 2063 - and numerous others. That aside, the EIP is due for launch and to become operational as of June.
More current information about the EIP and updates are available via the European Commission here.
View the joint exchange with experts on the European Fund for Sustainable Development held by the European Parliament on the 8th of March here. Information about the joint presentation of the draft report on the EFSD (21st of March) can be found here.
Call for input on Civil Society Programme at the EBRD Annual Meeting
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has launched a call for contributions to its Civil Society Programme, which is open for discussion at the 26th EBRD Annual Meeting taking place on the 9th-11th of May in Nicosia, Cyprus. The Civil Society Programme is the flagship event of the EBRD, and civil society organisations (CSOs) are invited to suggest discussion topics about EBRD investment projects, policies and initiatives.
At the Annual Meeting the EBRD provides CSOs with the opportunity to discuss in multi-stakeholder roundtable sessions the investment projects and policy documents of and with the EBRD. Focus of the discussions will be on the role of civil society in promoting transition resilience and the green economy transition.
Find out more about the call for proposal here.
First AREI projects identified and funding agreed
A Technical Meeting on Africa Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI) contributions and second meeting of the initiative’s Board of Directors took place on the 2-4 of March in Conakry, Guinea, with the first 19 AREI projects identified and agreed. They include investments in renewable energy generation capacity and in interconnectors as well as projects to further support the development of the enabling environment. Together the 19 projects represent a total potential investment of €4.8 billion and an estimated generation capacity of circa 1.8 GW.
European support to the Africa Renewable Energy Initiative comes from France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, the EU and Sweden, as well as The Netherlands. Together with other G7 countries they have committed to mobilise at least $10 billion cumulatively from 2015-2020.
UNFCCC survey finds developing countries need more finance to implement NDCs
The UNFCCC has published a study on developing countries’ needs for implementing their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). The main result of the survey is the urgent need for access to finance for the green power sectors in developing countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean to help put their NDCs into practice.
Even though many countries in these regions receive support from international organisations, in many cases it seems to be insufficient. 79 countries took part in the survey and Regional Collaboration Centres of the UNFCCC collected information from Designated National Authorities. Many of them see the Clean Development Mechanism, standardised baselines and Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMA) as important measures to achieve their NDCs.
For more information and to read the survey, please follow the link.
New reports published by World Bank, IEA and IRENA underline strong global expansion of renewables
The World Bank on has recently launched a report on Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE). The report grades the policy and regulatory framework in place in 111 countries in the fields of energy access, energy efficiency and renewable energy. According to the report an annual investment of $1 trillion by 2030 is needed to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. RISE classifies countries into a green, yellow and red category, ranging from strong to weak performers. The report highlights the leading efforts by Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda and their right policy frameworks – though much remains to be done.
Additionally, International Energy Agency (IEA) and International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) launched a joint report at the recent Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue on what would be needed in the energy sector to limit temperature rises “well below 2°C”, as agreed in Paris in 2015. The report, “Perspectives for the Energy Transition - Investment Needs for a Low-Carbon Energy System", was prepared at the request of the German government to provide input for the G20 presidency.
Further, the IEA also published its Medium-Term Renewable Energy Market Report for 2016, looking into the global status and market for renewables. It found that despite low fossil fuel prices renewable energy expanded at its fastest ever rate in 2015. The IEA credits this growth to supportive government policies and cost reductions.
Greater cooperation to support SIDS in implementing SGDs agreed at regional Forum
Between the 21st and 23rd of February representatives from governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations as well as from the private sector and academia convened in Aruba for the Caribbean Sustainable Development Forum. The Forum sought to discuss areas of enhanced regional cooperation to promote sustainable development. The outcomes included a series of recommendations for (greater) regional cooperation. The Forum was supported by the Government of the Netherlands as part of its aim to support Small Island developing States (SIDS) in achieving the SDGs.
Details about the Forum can be found here.
New publications released on climate financing and its contribution to renewable energy
Renewable energy and energy transitions are central to addressing climate change – and climate finance plays a crucial role in expanding renewable energy to implement the SDGs and the Paris Agreement. Two recently released reports explore some key aspects thereof:
The World Resource Institute’s “Future of the Funds: Exploring the Architecture of Multilateral Climate Finance” examines the main multilateral climate funds, identifying limitations in their efficacy and impact. It includes recommendations for potential reforms to improve their efficiency.
In “The Productivity of International Financial Institutions’ Energy Interventions”, the Climate Policy Initiative meanwhile explored the role of international financial institutions’ (IFIs) role in unlocking and scaling up investments in the energy sector and analyses the portfolios of seven key bilateral and multilateral IFIs with a view to this role.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE PRIVATE SECTOR
Private sector seminar on sustainable energy in the EU external action programmes
A private sector seminar will be held on the 13th of June at the Hotel Bloom in Brussels to provide private companies that want to get involved with EU external aid instruments with information on how to do so. The event focusses on sustainable energy in EU external aid programmes and is open to companies from all over Europe. Further information will available via the initiative’s website closer to the time, and interested companies are requested to contact their permanent representation to arrange their registration and participation.
Introducing the new Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy at the AUC
The new Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy at the African Union Commission, H.E. Dr. Amani Abu-Zeid, took office from H.E. Dr. Elham M.A. Ibrahim on the 15th of March. The new Commissioner began her tenure by attending the First Ordinary Session of the African Union Specialized Technical Committee for the Ministries responsible for Transport, Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism, held in Lome, Togo, on the 17th of March.
In her first speech as Commissioner, Dr. Abu-Zeid revealed her commitment to prioritise infrastructure and energy development by increasing the involvement of both public and private sector actors. She put special emphasis on private sector participation – in particular African players – and on the need for quality projects that make a good business case. She decried as “socially unacceptable” the fact that two thirds of the African population do not have access to electricity. She also expressed AUC’s commitment to work closely with partners including the African Development Bank, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency (NPCA) to address the challenges facing Africa in infrastructure and energy.
In an address to the meeting, Director Stephen Karingi of the UN Economic Commission for Africa’s Capacity Development Division underlined the need for African governments and their partners to focus on developing hard infrastructure. He also emphasised the need for support for the implementation of a pan-African free trade agreement, with energy, transport and logistics services key sectors to be covered by such an agreement.
Additionally, a high-level EU delegation, led by High Representative Federica Mogherini, visited the AUC headquarters in Addis Ababa, just days after the new Commission took office. The visit is seen as underlining Europe’s focus on strengthening relations with the AU in the run-up to the 5th Africa-Europe Summit; her remarks are here. Further, her remarks at the informal meeting of Ministers for Development Cooperation are available here.
International support for green investments in Egypt
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Agence Française de Développement and the European Investment Bank launched their new Green Economy Financing Facility (GEFF) for Egypt on the 21st of March in Cairo, Egypt.
The GEFF programme is a climate finance programme carried out via the banking sector. The programme foresees to provide loans for energy efficiency measures as well as small-scale renewable energy projects to private companies in Egypt.
Further information, including on the launch event, can be found here.
SEFA commits about $1 million to energy access for The Gambia
The European Union and the World Bank have continued to pledge financial support to the government of The Gambia, following a two year suspension of aid support due to human rights abuses and the misappropriation of funds by former President Yahya Jammeh.
Additionally, the African Development Bank has committed a $1 million grant through the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA) to attract private investments in clean and sustainable energy through green mini-grids in The Gambia. The SEFA-funded project aims to support the establishment of an appropriate policy and regulatory framework, the development of technical standards and guidelines, and the improvement of tender processes to attract the most suitable investors.
More information is available here.
Additionally, French President Francois Holland met with President Adama Barrow of The Gambia and a high-level delegation on a state visit on the 14th of March to discuss areas of cooperation. These include the fields of telecommunications, trade, energy and education.
New Report on Africa Progress Panel “Lights Power Action: Electrifying Africa”
A new report by Kofi Annan’s Africa Progress Panel, entitled “Lights, Power, Action: Electrifying Africa”, highlights the need for investments in on- and off-grid solutions to ensure reliable and sustainable energy access. Grid-connected projects are important to scale-up national and regional energy generation and transmission - but will only reach approximately 30% of those who will gain access to electricity in Africa’s rural areas by 2040.
Investments in off-grid and mini-grid solutions therefore also need to be increased in order to provide quick solutions for those people lacking energy access. Kofi Annan, chair of the Africa Progress Panel, states that “traditional approaches to extending the grid are no longer viable as the main option for African countries. They will take too long and will not meet the needs of our growing economies and societies. Instead, governments and their partners need to seize the opportunity to re-imagine their energy futures”.
The report is available here.
On the 17th of March high -level experts gathered in Vienna for the Global Environmental Summit of Best Practice Solutions, and addressed both the current environmental situation and existing global solutions. In a discussion moderated by Miss Earth Austria, Kimberly Budinsky, the experts presented best practices from their regions. They were joined at the summit by the winners of the 2016 Energy Globe World Award, with outstanding projects selected from more than 2,000 submissions in 178 countries receiving particular praise.
The Government of Finland has expressed its interest in exploring the bioenergy potential in the mainland territories of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Kukka Pietikaine, new Finish Ambassador to CARICOM, stated that bioenergy plays a central role in Finland’s energy mix and expressed his interest to continue cooperation in renewable energy technologies. A Memorandum of Understanding on political dialogue and technical cooperation had been signed by CARICOM and countries of the Nordic region in September 2016. For further information, please see here.
Germany and UK
Seven NAMA support projects have been selected from the 4th NAMA Facility’s Call by the UK and Germany, and will receive funds for their Detailed Preparation Phase. The UK and Germany will raise up to €60 million in order to support the implementation of the Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs). The NAMAs are an important tool for the implementation of the NDCs under the Paris Agreement. Countries receiving support for the Detailed Preparation Phase are Brazil, Mexico, Philippines, Thailand, Tunisia and Uganda. More information, including details on the projects selected, is available here.
For further general information on the NAMA Facility call, the NAMA Facility’s Technical Support Unit is hosting a webinar on “Lessons learnt from the 4th Call of the NAMA Facility”. It takes place on the 5th of April 2017 at 14.00-15.00 CET. More detailed information can be found here.
The Dutch development bank, Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO) announced a loan to Climate Investor One (CIO) of $52.5 million for hydro, solar and wind energy projects. Through the loan FMO offers support to CIO to aid the development and construction of some 20 renewable energy projects. CIO is mobilising an estimated $2 billion for renewable energy projects in developing countries. Its goal is to prevent the release of 1.5 million tons of carbon dioxide per year.
More information about Climate Investor One can be found here.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the development of renewable energy projects has been signed by the Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL) and the Norwegian power company W. Giertsen Energy Solutions. The aim of the MoU is to implement renewable energy projects focused on rural areas in Uganda. "The partnership will go a long way in opening up opportunities for further cooperation between the Norwegian government and UEGCL in the areas of renewable energy development and capacity building”, UEGCL said.
For further information please see here.
Increased trading is a key to ending poverty in developing countries. Acknowledging this the UK’s Secretary of State for International Development, Priti Patel, launched the Department for International Development’s first Economic Development Strategy. The strategy lays emphasis on job creation, building livelihoods and providing investment opportunities for British enterprises which also benefit the world’s poorest. The strategy was launched during Patel’s recent trip to Ethiopia - the second largest beneficiary of UK aid. The British Embassy in Ethiopia stated that the UK “puts trade and jobs at [the] heart” of the fight against poverty.
- Report: IISD update - Climate Finance, focussing on new financing tools. Here.
- Briefing: ECDPM talking points - the European External Investment Plan and sustainable development. Here.
- Videos: Power for All - voices on “How far and fast will distributed renewables go?”. Here.
- Photo Competition: Smart Villages. Participate here.
- Tool: NREL - Renewable energy data explorer for decision making support. Here.
- Report: ODI - The Sustainable Development Goals and their Trade-Offs. Here.
- Webinar: Clean Energy Solutions Center - Research and Innovation Needs for Smart Grid Transition. Here
- Webinar: Clean Energy Solutions Center - Toward Universal Energy Access in West Africa: The Role of Distributed Energy Solutions for the Post-Ebola Recovery in Sierra Leone. Here.
- Report: DIE - Coherent G20 policies towards the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Here.
- Opinion Piece: EIB - EU’s New Consensus on Development needs support. Here.
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