Maximising efficiency – digitalisation & optimisation in the DRE sector

David Lecoque, CEO, ARE

AFD Digital Energy Challenge: Digital innovation for the energy transition

Cyril Renault, Energy Task Team Leader, Agence française de développement

They come from Comoros, Kenya, Niger and other African countries. The 10 winners of the Digital Energy Challenge, whether they are electricity operators or start-ups, are all innovating to advance Africa's energy transition. The list of winners was announced on 29 November at a bootcamp organised as part of the Emerging Valley forum. In Marseille, this event was an opportunity for the winners of the challenge, its partners and invited experts to participate in meetings, workshops and panel discussions.

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"Digitalisation continues to play a fundamental role in improving access to energy, integrating renewable energies and improving the performance of energy operators, particularly in developing countries," stresses Bertrand Walckenaer, Deputy Director of the French Development Agency (AFD). With financing from the European Union, AFD has designed and will implement the Digital Energy Facility programme in 2019 to support the modernisation of the energy sector by focusing on African countries.

"The Digital Energy Facility is part of the European Union's Global Gateway strategy to support our African partners in their energy and digital transition," says Carla Montesi, Director of the European Commission's Directorate General for International Partnerships. This programme is also a good example of a Team Europe approach, between the European Union and one of its Member States, through a development bank like AFD.

For the 2022 edition of the Challenge, 116 applications from start-ups and 13 from energy operators working in partnership with technology and service providers were evaluated. From network mapping to the automation of maintenance operations, the proposed innovations cover a wide range of sectors. "In Niger, the installation of smart meters makes it possible to monitor consumption in real time and avoid billing discrepancies," says Diafara Moussa, director of E-Energietec and winner. "Finishing in the top 10 of this challenge will allow us to acquire quality equipment to develop our product."

An annual European Union grant of EUR 1.5 million, divided between the various projects, enables the bearers of these innovations to deploy them and support the energy transition. For this 2022 edition, the challenge's budget has been supplemented by a contribution of EUR 500,000 from the French Agency for Ecological Transition (Ademe).

At the end of the Challenge, the winners will receive financial support in the form of a grant and technical assistance for the implementation of their projects. "The management of the Comorian electricity network is not optimal at the moment," notes Nawal Soilih of the Comoros National Electricity Company (Sonelec). "This is why we have partnered with the start-up Roseau Technologies to map and model our installations. The support of the challenge will allow us to access a better quality of supply."

After the success of the first two editions, the next Digital Energy Challenge will be launched in early 2023.

 

It's all about the data

Digitalisation is the necessary prerequisite to any system optimisation strategy in a mini-grid. Availability and usability of data are the two key determinants of the digitalisation process, therefore, the obvious first step is to establish a secure and unobstructed communication pathway between the individual devices such as generators, storage, consumer meters, sensors and other components that constitute the entire mini-grid infrastructure.

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The particular issue we have encountered is that most devices do not share a standard for communication with other devices or systems. This may be trivial if the users or operators only interact with one device at a time, however, the problem quickly becomes apparent when a diverse set of devices, with various communication protocols, are expected to clearly share data to achieve a common objective in a collective system.

One way to address this issue is to design a virtual platform such as the Unified Management System (UMS) that integrates with all of the multifarious devices and creates Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) from their data outputs. The KPIs are presented as dashboards, reports and alerts that are customisable by the operator.

System optimisation occurs when the operator is empowered to design and test new policies that are formed by the insights from the KPIs. The process is completed when the UMS implements the new policies into the mini-grid systems. The cycle can be repeated for continuous improvement of the mini-grid and its users.

Improving the performance of a physical device through software updates is already a common practice in other technology fields, for example:

  • Smartwatches collect and process biochemical data to recommend and promote healthy lifestyle habits to the user, and
  • Electric cars receive regular system updates that improve the performance such as through its autopilot system and even increase the total mileage available from the same physical batteries

In both cases, data promotes improvements for users and devices without any change to the physical systems. Likewise, mini-grid efficiency is directly correlated to its components and users' behaviour. Our focus has been on designing the most efficient, open-source, data collection and processing platform that:

  1. Integrates and collects data from any source
  2. Unifies and presents the data in a meaningful way for the users and operators
  3. Empowers operators to express desired behaviour through policy
  4. Enables simulation of the policies without changing the physical arrangements
  5. Promotes continuous improvement through the new data that is produced from the new policies implementations

A platform for digitalisation and optimisation can be used to maximise productive use which enables sustainable economic development for rural communities.

 

INENSUS launches free-of-charge cloud version of MicroPowerManager

Local entrepreneurs are increasingly emerging in the form of Decentralised Electric Utilities (DEUs) to reach deep rural unelectrified communities globally. These handle a vast amount of technical and financial data for their operations. However, only larger utilities can afford the customisation and integration of commercially available software solutions. Therefore, smaller DEUs depend on the manual handling of technical and transactional data points, which hinders business growth and prevents cost reductions.

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To fill the above gap, in 2020 INENSUS launched the software MicroPowerManager Open Source which facilitates the entire data management for DEUs within a single software platform.

As DEUs were hesitant to establish and operate the software on their own server, INENSUS developed the concept further and is presenting its upgraded version: the MicroPowerManager-Cloud (MPM-Cloud). MPM-Cloud makes day-to-day operation of utilities easier on three key fronts:   

  • IT Infrastructure. With MPM-Cloud, the DEUs do not need to operate and pay for their own server anymore. Instead, it can simply sign up, select the applicable set-up, transfer existing data to the platform and start using the software straightaway!
  • IT Capacity. The utilities do not need to worry about installing the software manually. The required IT knowledge is minimal with MPM-Cloud. INENSUS runs the backend while utilities can focus on their mini-grid business. INENSUS’ software-development team takes care of reliable and safe operation for the users.
  • Data Protection. The software is built in ‘One website, many databases’ format where data of one Utility is never mixed with data from another Utility.

The platform now comes with the seamless integration of both, the systems from leading meter manufacturers’ as well as country-specific mobile money operators. The key features of the MPM are all available free-of-cost with the cloud version, including electricity and appliance sales (via deferred payment schemes) using mobile money, SMS marketing campaigns as well as for monitoring revenue, staff and asset performance. An Android App for customer/meter registration including geo-tagging and another for establishing a bi-directional SMS gateway for customer communication are also available.

Nico Peterschmidt, CEO of INENSUS says: “With this free-of-charge and easy-to-use service, we want to help especially smaller mini-grid companies professionalise their operations, reduce operational cost and maximise electricity customer satisfaction.”

INENSUS would like to thank all users and sector-stakeholders who had provided feedback on MPM Open Source. The development of MPM-Cloud is financially supported by DOEN Foundation.

https://micropowermanager.com/

 

CPCS, in collaboration with the Rural Electrification Agency of Senegal (ASER), innovates to facilitate electricity network mapping using artificial intelligence

Energy experts at CPCS are developing a unique robot that can map a city’s electricity distribution network, to optimise the network’s operations and facilitate the planning of its extensions by public power utilities.

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Today, very few power utilities in sub-Saharan Africa have a digitised map of their distribution network, which is essential for the smooth management of the network. This is generally carried out years after commissioning and requires the mobilisation of a large workforce on the field to collect detailed information on the electric assets. This method is time-consuming, expensive, and prone to many errors.

Thanks to artificial intelligence (AI), the robot that CPCS is developing will assist in mapping the distribution network of a locality in real-time, in just a few days rather than months, with greater precision and at a lower cost for utilities and rural electrification agencies.

Key points:

  • Mounted on a vehicle, the robot roams the streets mapping the electrical infrastructure, including overhead lines and medium/low-voltage equipment such as poles, transformers, insulators, cross arms and public lighting lanterns.
  • The technology consists of high-resolution cameras and GPS
  • All data collected by the robot will be:
    • analysed by the AI algorithm and classified according to a nomenclature of equipment defined in collaboration with the National Electricity Company of Senegal (SENELEC). SENELEC’s support is crucial for the development of the AI, which will identify and characterise both rural and urban networks, as well as the different distribution technologies (three-phase, single-phase)
    • integrated into ASER’s Geographic Information System (GIS) and key indicators displayed on a public visualisation platform
  • This robot offers a better, cheaper, and faster method to map with greater precision electricity distribution networks

How this technology came about

CPCS and ASER were among the winners of the first Digital Energy Challenge organised by the Agence française de développement (AFD) in 2021.

The challenge awards projects that foster innovation and digitisation in the energy sector and is open to start-ups and public power utilities in partnership with an innovative technology or service provider.

 

Digital by design: Efficient data management for energy access impact measurement

Improved rural energy access enhances households’ life quality, reduces communities’ vulnerability and increases business productivity. At the same time, modern technologies are replacing polluting energy sources. Clean energy solutions reduce dependence on biomass for cooking and fossil fuels for lighting, thus contributing to environmental preservation and, in communities where women are responsible for biomass collection, gender equity. Furthermore, supporting local women-owned rural energy companies increases women's empowerment.

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Managing these different dimensions of impact goes beyond tracking financial and outcome data. Data on return on investment, sales, and jobs created, often collected at the energy supplier level, should be combined with broader customer-centric assessments. Data collection is particularly challenging in the rural energy sector, where customers live in remote areas. Moreover, companies might need additional data management tools and human resources for reporting tasks. These challenges become reporting burdens for fund impact managers, who must often manually handle multiple excel files and align results with different reporting standards.

At HEDERA, we believe that impact management shall be digital by design. We aim to empower rural organisations through provision of digital tools for data collection, validation, analysis, and reporting. Well-designed cloud-based data management systems can facilitate more efficient and transparent impact monitoring processes.

By supporting organisations and investors in structuring their impact data from the beginning, digital impact management systems provide a sustainable reporting solution that can easily be adapted to different languages and stakeholders.

Since 2020, HEDERA has supported UNCDF in digitising reporting of investees in the Renewable Energy Challenge Fund. This has facilitated the monitoring process, helped improve data quality and provided investees with ready-to-use impact reports automatically generated from their KPIs. For household assessment, we developed a library of web-based and mobile data collection tools digitising the latest standards frameworks for basic needs assessment, including the ESMAP Multi-Tier Framework for energy access. In the IMPACT-R project, HEDERA surveyed over 7,000 rural households in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. The results, available in a public dashboard, highlighted the nexus between energy access, access to clean water and food security. Contact us to have more details on our solutions.

Our digital-by-design approach will be the focus of two upcoming webinar series in 2023:

The ARE network is invited to participate to these events. Visit our webpages to know more. Participation is free, but spots might be limited.

 

Digitalisation – a journey

Digitalisation is a journey and as we take a quick look at the sectors of Solar Home Systems (SHS) and e-mobility, it is clear they are at different maturity levels; below are some of the critical questions they need to solve next.

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Distributors of PAYGO SHS - Data to anticipate risk

The last mile distribution of SHS has more than a decade of history - and all the players know that to scale you need to digitise and they have a good choice of digital tools to support their sales operations. The collaboration between Product – Software – Distributors is solid (always with room for improvement).

However, during the last GOGLA Conference in October one crucial question was raised: How can data really help to limit or even better, anticipate risk? One obvious answer is: “listen” to your KPIs such as PAR (Portfolio at Risk) and Repayment Rates. The second is more complex: pertinence of data entered, profiling of potential customers etc. First it requires a series of hit/miss crossing with historical data to see patterns. Ultimately, it will require a central registry of future customer’s credit risk (through the CRB in Kenya for example). Unfortunately, those days seem very distant and feel very much like the chicken and the egg riddle. Undoubtedly, there is work to be done.

As the data is accumulated, critical KPIs such as PAR and Repayment Rates are to be looked at carefully to make the right business decisions on time and limit risk (from Upya Analytics page)

E-mobility – Digitalisation = Vertical integration? 

Although new, the e-mobility space already counts more than 100 players. All working to define their business model and, in contrast with the SHS space, most being vertically integrated, even in terms of their main digital tools.

Multiple scenarios explain the above, one is that most have yet to validate their business model and therefore want everything in-house to change and pivot where needed very quickly. Two, the perception that third party tools are not specific enough to their space (reach out to Upya if that is your belief). And three, they want to control the data, as a potential business or monetisation opportunity, yet to be determined.

The recent announcement by Ampersand of its partnership with BBOXX is the early sign that e-mobility will move away from being vertical integrated and follow the path of the SHS sector.

However, adjacent industries like the PAYGO SHS space, and we could even add the clean cooking space, show that slowly but surely the industry will “disintegrate”. In fact, recently, Ampersand announced their partnership with BBOXX that will manage the distribution and leasing side of the business. Very quickly e-mobility companies will need to define what is their true value proposition and collaborate with external partners for the rest… before they lose focus and run out of steam.

About Upya Technologies:

Upya’s mission is to support its customers as they scale and manage impactful businesses. Upya is an ERP/CRM provider present in more than 20 countries partnering with small promising start-ups and industry leaders of impact driven solutions: off-grid solar, clean cooking, productive use and e-mobility.

www.upya.io

 

It's here: The Open-source smart meter for DRE companies

At the current electrification rate, leveraging conventional power solutions alone, ~30% of Nigeria’s population will still be without electricity by 2030; resulting in a failure to achieve the government’s ambitions of ensuring access to sustainable and reliable energy for the whole population (in line with UN SDG 7) and Nigeria’s Energy Transition Plan.

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One of the key barriers to rapid expansion and investment in the energy access market has been the affordability of solar solutions. With the average per capita income in Nigeria of USD 2,000 per annum, buying solar equipment capable of supporting Productive Use Equipment (PUE) is out of reach for most citizens.

As a solar energy solution provider, First Electric understood first-hand the challenges of affordability of solar energy systems sufficient for the 21st century households and small & medium sized enterprises. This demographic of users needs solar systems in the range of 1-10 kW and these types of systems cost between USD 900-10,000. First Electric embarked on an ideation process to come up with a solution that could reduce the financial barrier of providing a solar solution while also providing revenue assurance to solar developers and investors and landed on Energy as a Service.

Under this model, the solar solution provider maintains ownership of the solar equipment and charges customers per kWh for exactly what they consume. For this solution to work effectively, they needed an inexpensive and OEM agnostic GSM prepaid smart energy meter which connected to their network and could easily be topped up. Off-the-shelf solutions such as Steamaco and SparkMeter are better suited to large developers for mini-grid applications where many meters are to be deployed in one site.

EnAccess stepped in because there was a proven need for a smart meter that was affordable and could be deployed one unit at a time. This is important particularly in urban areas that already have a level of grid connectivity; being able to deploy solar solutions to an individual customer or a cluster of customers without having to worry about minimum viable order quantity brings much needed flexibility. 

The First Electric meter is entirely Open Source and can be easily adopted by solar developers in Nigeria or anywhere else in the world. It solves a problem that affects many solar developers in the DRE space and is inexpensive to manufacture. Visit enaccess.org to access the open source hardware design, web software, firmware and directions.

Questions? Get in touch with EnAccess: info@enaccess.org.

 

https://enaccess.org/materials/smartmeter/https://www.ruralelec.org/event-calendar/2nd-annual-sustainability-week-asia

  • The GET.invest Finance Catalyst has supported over 300 RE companies

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    The GET.invest Finance Catalyst - one of GET.invest’s main services - has just surpassed the mark of 300 accepted applications from green energy projects and companies operating across sub-Saharan Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific. These projects are expected to reduce over 108.3 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year, in a total investment volume of more than EUR 4.5 billion.

    The GET.invest Finance Catalyst provides advisory support in the areas of investment strategy, business case structuring and access to finance with the goal of linking projects and companies to financiers. Our team of advisors has a proven track record in supporting an extensive list of market segments, including wind, solar, hybrid, hydro, biomass and biogas projects, as well as clean cooking companies, productive use, battery storage and e-mobility. Our latest success story, available here, is about Amped Innovation - a GET.invest Finance Catalyst supported company that reached a financial close of EUR 5.9 million.

    It all started with a referral: impressed by Amped’s sales traction to date, ElectriFI referred the company to the GET.invest Finance Catalyst to build an improved financial model. The advisory started by creating a detailed due diligence to develop comprehension of the company, which served as the basis of an effective financial model. The advisors then added an innovative working capital facility that simultaneously decreased the risk to ElectriFI and Amped’s interest rate. The other services provided by the GET.invest Finance Catalyst included revising and commenting on the due diligence documents such as policies and procedures, discussing the most favourable commercial aspects, and, subsequently, term sheet negotiations.

    After reaching an initial funding agreement of EUR 2.22 million, with the support of the GET.invest Finance Catalyst the company was able to double the funding agreement to a financial close of a EUR 5.9 million revolving working capital facility. This working capital facility is the first such instrument ever offered by ElectriFI and is expected to provide SHS to more than 500,000 people in over 20 countries across Africa and Southeast Asia.

    The GET.invest Finance Catalyst is free of charge and available throughout the year. The applications are available here and are evaluated in recurring cycles of three to four weeks.

    GET.invest is a European programme supported by the European Union, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Austria. Since 2022, GET.invest has been mandated to serve as the Team Europe One Stop Shop, your access point for information about and facilitated access to support and financing instruments for green energy in Africa.

    For more information, visit GET.invest or contact at info@get-invest.eu

  • ARE addresses the opportunity of the energy transition in the Asia Pacific at Reuters Events

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    Amidst the immediate imperative to secure stable and affordable energy in the face of geopolitical tensions, how can countries across the region collaborate to ensure a stable energy supply and the distribution of local natural resources, while ensuring significant economic profits?

    ARE joined the keynote panel at the Energy Transition Asia Pacific organised by Reuters on 30 November – 1 December 2022 and shared the challenges faced by developing nations in terms of energy access and affordability in Asia Pacific. 

    "If the government makes the market that private sector feels comfortable for investment, then we will get much further. To encourage countries and stakeholders to really grasp the opportunity the energy transition provides.

    "There is a lot of negative news in the world but we are in a race now to have the best technology, and futureproofed infrastructure, this race is continually ongoing. We can see the dramatic shifts in recent times."

    Key quotes and takeaways

  • The OFF-GRID Expo + Conference inspires as an international conference fair for self-sufficient, off-grid renewable energy and water supply

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    The OFF-GRID Expo + Conference 2022 is one of the most important industry meetings of the international off-grid sector and closed with a positive outcome and innovative, practical initiatives. More than 60 exhibitors from 12 countries presented their products during the two-day show. Approx. 900 participants from 27 countries explored solutions, innovations and services for an off-grid power supply.

    The 4th OFF-GRID Expo + Conference (OEC) congress trade fair was held in Augsburg on 1-2 December 2022 and was again a great success with a well-attended specialist conference and numerous opportunities for networking. In keeping with tradition, the event kicked off on 30 November 2022 with TechDay, which provided service sessions offering users in-depth insights into innovative products.

    ARE was again a conceptual partner for the conference. "One of the key takeaways from the conference was that companies and institutes involved in renewable energy are increasingly networking with each other across industries: whether e-mobility, agriculture, telecommunications or other sectors," said Jens Jaeger, ARE’s Director of Policy and Business Development. 

    "The conference demonstrated that the water-energy-food nexus in particular, which aims to support the SDGs, was of immense benefit." 

    Other highlights included two sessions on women as entrepreneurs driving change and financing options in various forms, e.g., microfinance. Additional topics included innovative cooling applications, DRE and e-mobility, and energy storage solutions.

    Read the press release

  • DRE solutions to tackle post-harvest challenges in Papua New Guinea

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    The webinar was organised by Market Development Facility (MDF) and Beanstalk AgTech, in partnership with ARE, on 8 December 2022 to discuss the role of innovation – especially in rural energy generation, storage, and distribution – in solving issues of productivity, quality, and market access across PNG’s cocoa sector​.

    More particularly, participants learned about:

    • How the GRAFT programme supports tech innovators to scale across borders and build meaningful commercial and strategic relationships;
    • The major challenges facing PNG’s cocoa sector, and the approaches and technologies industry leaders are taking to tackle them;
    • How pioneers in the rural energy space are positioned to take the lead in solving commercially valuable and socially impactful challenges globally.

    Watch the recording

  • ARE advance DRE talks at COP27

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    Around 15 delegates joined the ARE delegation to COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh on 6-18 Nov, which featured ARE Member and the Secretariat participation in a plethora of panels and activities.

    Interested in following up with us on the link between the climate and DRE agenda?

    Contact: Jens Jaeger

  • EU Green Power Transformation Forum Workshop Underlines Renewable Electrification Potential in Eswatini

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    ARE, Business Eswatini (BE) and the Renewable Energy Association of Eswatini (REAESWA) organised the EU Green Power Transformation Forum Workshop on 9 November 2022 in Mbabane. The event was held with the support of the EU Delegation to Eswatini and the two European programmes GET.invest and GET.transform.

    This hybrid workshop convened public and private sector representatives to enable business partnerships and knowledge sharing to catalyse investments and power sector reform to support the energy transition in Eswatini. The workshop was a great success, with more than 80 participants joining the debate and discussing opportunities for the energy transition in Eswatini on-site and over 50 people following the workshop online.

    The agenda was opened by Constance Vanzuydam, Chairperson of REAESWA, and followed by welcome notes from ARE, GIZ, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Energy and the EU Delegation to Eswatini before moving on to presentations on the basics of renewable energy, the legal and policy frameworks of the country with a focus on the 2050 Energy Master Plan Eswatini. The existing generation investment plans and some examples of success stories in the country were also shared with the participants.

    The workshop then continued with two roundtables on the role of different actors in the renewable energy sector of the country and bankability and project financing. A final panel discussion addressed the skilled job force for the Eswatini renewable energy sector.

    The event was hosted in the context of the EU Green Power Transformation Forum, which included the launch of a country window of the impact investment facility Electrification Financing Initiative (ElectriFI), as well as the launch of the Eswatini country window of GET.invest and GET.transform, which are supported by the EU, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria. ElectriFI is set to increase access to clean energy in Eswatini through providing suitable finance to companies and project developers. Hand in hand with this, GET.invest and GET.transform will deploy their global services and tailor them to the local requirements. More concretely, they will leverage their expertise on the private and public sector to support conducive renewable energy sector regulations and mobilise investments in private renewable energy projects. With this holistic approach, the new country windows thus contribute to developing truly viable energy sector solutions in Eswatini.

    Overall, the EU Green Power Transformation Forum Workshop stressed how renewable solutions in Eswatini’s energy mix are a prerequisite to meeting the country's aim of universal access to clean energy while ensuring that sustainability remains a key pillar in these efforts.

    Read the press release

  • Employment & entrepreneurship in the DRE sector – A gender perspective

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    Nearly 130 participants took part in the webinar on ‘Employment & Entrepreneurship in the DRE Sector – A Gender Perspective’, organised by ARE and Green People’s Energy on 9 November 2022.

    The webinar gathered experts from UNITAR, ENGIE Energy Access, HIVOS and Benoo to discuss the opportunities and constraints that low-income women face in accessing livelihoods in each level of the DRE supply chain.

    Watch the recording

  • Sharing best practices in Namibia

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    Organised by the Ministry of Mines & Energy and GIZ, Namibia Electrification Day held on 22 November 2022 in Windhoek, ARE shared best practices on the role of utilities and financing solutions for off- and on-grid renewable electrification in Namibia.

    Participants included utilities, international funding partners and industry.

    Read the news article

  • Exchanging on energy access impact indicators in the context of Belize

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    Organised by Ministry of Public Utilities, Energy, Logistics & E-Governance of Belize and CARICOM, the Belize Energy Access Workshop in Belize City on 23 November 2022, ARE exchanged with stakeholders on energy access impact indicators for use from a statistical and policymaking point of view.

    The event featured representatives from the Belize government, governments from the region, funders and industry.

    Watch the recording

  • Mozambique Government bets big on the potential of renewable energy at business conference

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    The Mozambican Renewable Energy Association (AMER), the Lusophone Renewable Energy Association (ALER), and ARE organised the Business Conference - Renewables in Mozambique on 6-7 December 2022 in Maputo, with the support of GET. invest Mozambique, funded by the European Union and Germany, and part of the European programme GET.invest.​

    By the end of 2022, it is estimated that the total electrification rate in Mozambique will reach 44%. The government is committed to providing all Mozambicans with high-quality, affordable and sustainable electricity by 2030, and, for this purpose, launched the Energy for All Programme, coordinated by the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy (MIREME). Off-grid solutions are expected to play a key role to achieve this goal. Set to support the energy access goals through the promotion of renewable energy, the two-day business conference gathered the Mozambican public and private sectors as well as other national and international actors.

    The event kicked off with opening remarks from Teodoro Vales, Permanent Secretary of MIREME; Antonino Maggiore, Head of the Delegation of European Union to Mozambique; Lothar Freischlader, German Ambassador; Ricardo Pereira, President of AMER; Mayra Pereira, President of ALER; and David Lecoque, CEO of ARE.

    The high-level panel on the Mozambican Renewable Energy Market took place on the first day of the event and was followed by a handful of insightful panels and sessions. The programme continued with sessions on market scoping and opportunities for on-grid and off-grid sectors.

    The first day of the event also featured the presentation of “Briefing: Renewables in Mozambique 2022”. In this regard, the Briefing was presented with the latest data, showcasing Mozambique as a country with a high potential for renewable energy resources, ambitious targets to meet SDG 7, a favourable regulatory framework, projects identified in all segments and technologies, tenders released for IPPs and mini-grids, a wide range of support from cooperation partners and their programmes, an ambitious private sector with experience in the market and with examples to showcase.

    On the second day of the event, the programme started with the high-level panel on the role of renewables to achieve Mozambique’s SDG and climate commitments and continued with the sessions on renewable energy meeting other sector demands, and financing. At the closing of the conference, EDFI ElectriFI announced the launch of a EUR 15 million country window to unlock, accelerate and leverage private sector investment to increase or improve access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy in Mozambique.

    Throughout the event, the lively exhibition provided participants with the opportunity to showcase their products and services and forge new business relationships. Furthermore, the GET.invest matchmaking sessions allowed more than 114 meetings to take place between business partners in the region and investors, technology providers, project developers, as well as government officials. Delegates also had the chance to network during breaks and evening receptions.

    Attracting 241 delegates on-site and 183 virtual participants on Day 1 and 127 virtual participants on Day 2, the event was also backed by a number of sponsors including MATEMO as gold sponsor, ElectriFI as silver sponsor, and AECF, BCI, MDR and Solarworks! Moçambique as bronze sponsors.

    Read the press release

  • Enhancing available liquidity to the Mozambican renewable energy sector

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    Since 2021, GET.invest Mozambique, funded by the European Union and Germany, and part of the European programme GET.invest, is implementing the project Capacity Development for Domestic Financiers (CDDF) to support financial institutions in Mozambique in Renewable Energy Finance. The project supports domestic banks in lending and investing in renewable energy projects and businesses. Local currency financing is one of the missing links to scaling up investment flows into renewables and is particularly important for domestic enterprises.

    As part of their larger vision to facilitate private investments in DRE, GET.invest, in partnership with ARE, ALER and AMER organised on 8 December 2022 in Maputo an exclusive B2B networking event with representatives of the Mozambican banking sector. The event brought together the domestic financial sector with the leading European and global DFIs to explore opportunities in providing attractively priced renewable energy loan products or dedicated guarantee schemes to the Mozambican market.

  • ARE kicks off Investment Academy in Mozambique with 11 companies

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    The Finance Readiness training organised by ARE in partnership with GET.invest kicked off the first of its four modules on 9 December 2022 in Maputo.

    The purpose of the training is to support 11 early-stage SMEs active in the DRE sector across Mozambique with a targeted, finance training programme, in-depth project development training, pitching exercises and guidance on how to access financing for their businesses and projects.

    The next modules are due to take place in the first quarter of 2023.

  • Register now for the I4E webinar: Digitalisation & Optimisation

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    Join our fourth showcase event on 'Digitalisation & Optimisation' under the Innovation for Electrification (I4E) Series on 15 December 2022 at 14:00 - 15:30 CET!

    The world is faced with an energy dilemma. Worldwide, with 759 million people still without access to energy, solutions to close the energy gap must be implemented while plans to reach Net Zero are formalised. The IEA estimates that energy is responsible for around three-quarters of global greenhouse gas emissions, so we need to rethink how we create, manage, and consume energy. Digital technologies can play an instrumental role in improving energy efficiency and reducing energy consumption.

    The 90-minute webinar on 'Digitalisation & Optimisation' will feature presentations on digital technologies that can optimise energy production and consumption, related applications, and experiences from projects from ARE Members NXT Grid, Smarter Microgrid, illu and Ferntech.

    Register now

  • Invite: Energy Access investment Forum (Abidjan | 21-23 March)

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    The Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE) is thrilled to announce that the ARE Energy Access Investment Forum (EAIF) 2023 will take place on 21-23 March 2023 in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.

    EAIF 2023 is organised by ARE, co-hosted by the African Development Bank and the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa and supported by GET.invest and PROSPECT.

    EAIF is the top annual business and finance event for the DRE sector, enabling and fostering business and investor partnerships for the purpose of renewable electrification energy access, economic growth, decarbonisation and fighting against climate change.

    In 2023, the sector’s global flagship investment event aims to bring together up to 300 private and public financiers, energy and climate investors, development finance institutions, international funding partners, government officials and private sector companies.

    Mark it on your calendar

  • UNIDO ITPO & ARE: E-mobility & DRE Innovations in Emerging Economies

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    With an increase of e-mobility solutions powered by DRE in rural and peri-urban regions of emerging economies, the potential for these regions to become the frontrunners of the future low-carbon mobility sector is high. This hypothesis is best exemplified by the case studies featured in the publication.

    UNIDO ITPO Germany and ARE have joined hands to promote the role of integrated DRE and e-mobility solutions to accelerate the transition to sustainable and decarbonised mobility by showcasing innovative real-life examples from emerging economies. The 13 case studies and an expert interview in this publication highlight key challenges and benefits of this transition, while also proposing key recommendations and a way forward.

    This publication is dedicated to all companies taking pioneering steps by incorporating DRE solutions to power e-mobility. This not only boosts labour and economic productivity but also, on a broader scale, increases overall energy efficiency, thereby contributing to the decarbonisation of the mobility sector. The target audience for the publication are private sector companies and investors looking to enter the e-mobility space, the public sector entities considering establishing favourable environments for DRE-powered e-mobility solutions in their respective countries and regions and lastly, the international organisations, civil society, and local communities who are crucial at all levels of the project cycle to ensure their long-term sustainability.

  • ALER & AMER: Briefing: Renewables in Mozambique 2022

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    The latest briefing on renewables in Mozambique in 2022 was launched during the "Business Conference - Renewables in Mozambique 2022".

    Following the 2021 edition, ALER and AMER with the support of GET.invest Mozambique - funded by the European Union and Germany, and part of the European program GET.invest. published a reference document with the latest updates on the renewable energy market in Mozambique.

    Updates from the 2022 edition: 

    • The total electrification rate increased from 38% to 44%
    • The new Electricity Law and the Regulation of Access to Energy in Off-grid zones was published
    • FUNAE's 76 mini-grids, corresponding to 6.3 MW, increased to 97 mini-grids corresponding to 9.2 MW of energy
    • In 2021, there were two lines of credit for renewable energy products available in national banks. Today, there are 21 support programmes with grants totalling 282 M EUR of funding for renewable projects
    • A new chapter dedicated to the Commercial & Industrial sector

Please note that views expressed in the Co-Editorial, the In Focus section and the Special Feature of the newsletter, are those of the contributors and do not necessarily reflect ARE’s opinion.

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