Programme Overview

The green economy imperative of the energy sector is to enable and catalyse the transition to a low-carbon economy that is resilient to energy supply and demand fluctuation.

The basic laws of thermodynamics state that no system can continue to exist – or evolve – without the flow of energy. This is also true of society, which relies on energy for various functions within it. The economy is an embedded system of larger socio-political and ecological systems. In turn the economy comprises of a number of socio-technical – and other – sub-systems. The energy sector, as one sub-system of the economy, dictates how the flows occur between the various systems

Basic Concepts

  • Energy poverty: Energy poverty is lack of access to modern energy services. It refers to the situation of large numbers of people in developing countries whose well-being is negatively affected by very low consumption of energy, use of dirty or polluting fuels, and excessive time spent collecting fuel to meet basic needs.
  • Energy services: The end use ultimately provided by energy, e.g. lighting or heat.Energy system modelling. Used to project the future energy demand and supply of a country or a region.

Approaches

  • AHP: Analytical Hierarch Process – a multi-criteria decision analysis technique
  • Sustainability Assessment: Is expressly to prepare and design a development policy, plan, programme or project with sustainability as the desired outcome, rather than merely to prevent or mitigate potential environmental impacts. The approach is inherently positive as well as prospective. It is about considering the relationships between social, ecological and economic factors.
  • Technology assessment: The evaluation of an object, function, or sequence of functions –created by human society to assist in achieving a goal – with respect to sustainability in comparison of other solutions providing the same function(s)

What we Promote- Options

  • Biofuels : Liquid fuels and blending components produced from biomass (plant and animal) feedstocks, used primarily for transportation.
  • Biogas: Gaseous fuel produced from animal and crop residues. A mixture of methane, carbon dioxide and water vapour.
  • Geothermal energy: Natural heat from within the earth, captured for production of electric power, space heating or industrial steam.
  • Independent Power Producer (IPP): Privately owned power company that produces electricity and sells it for a profit to the national grid or to a distribution utility.
  • Micro hydro: Small-scale power generating systems that harness the power of falling water (above 100kW but below 1MW).
  • Run-of-the-river hydro: Hydropower schemes that use the natural flow of a river to generate power without obstructing the flow of the river with a dam or similar structure, and with little or no storage.
  • Solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies: Devices that convert the sun’s energy into electricity for use in lighting, refrigeration, telecommunications etc.
  • Solar-assisted air-conditioning: Thermally driven air-conditioner or chiller that uses water heated by the sun as its heat source.
  • Solar dryer: A special structure that uses the sun’s energy to dry agricultural produce (fruits, vegetables, meat).
  • Solar thermal technologies: Devices that use the sun as the primary source of energy for heat appliances, e.g. solar water heaters, solar dryers.
  • Solar water heaters: Devices that use solar energy to heat water for domestic, institutional, commercial and industrial use.
  • Wind turbines: Devices used to generate electricity using kinetic energy from wind.
  • Wind pumps: Devices that use wind energy to lift water from underground sources.

In light of the gains already registered, the potential for growth of the renewable energy sector is hampered by such factors as:

  • high demand for biomass,
  • slow intake of emerging technologies,
  • high charcoal demand,
  • low valuation of biomass energy,
  • increasing pressure on land,
  • low awareness on alternative energy,
  • inadequate skilled manpower,
  • non-tangible benefits,
  • high initial investment and unclear packaging standards.

To support these efforts, the Sustainable Development Goal 7 aims at ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.  This entails ascertaining universal access to affordable electricity by 2030, investing in clean energy sources such as solar, wind and thermal power. Further, it involves adopting cost-effective standards for a wider range of technologies to reduce the global electricity consumption by buildings and industry by 14 percent.  The Goal seeks to expand infrastructure and upgrade technology to provide clean energy sources to encourage growth and help the environment.

Moreover, lighting is a key household and office consumer of energy. This calls for alternative solution to reducing spending and costs associated with lighting. Generally, to save on lighting:

  • adopt such initiatives as: “the last one out turns off the lights” and install timers;
  • take advantage of natural light whenever possible;
  • when natural light is not available,
  • use energy efficient bulbs;
  • install motion sensors that automatically turn lights off;
  • angle the lights correctly.