FEATURE: Accelerating the global transition to clean energy
Emily Miller from the Clean Energy Solutions Center explains how the Center works with governments to turn clean energy visions into action.
South Africa’s population is growing—and so is its demand for electricity. Implementing energy efficiency policy is a critical component of South Africa’s ability to manage growth and meet its climate change goals. In the light of constrained growth in the electricity sector until 2017 and a lack of appliance or building standards to control energy use, the South African National Energy Development Institute turned to the Clean Energy Solutions Center for help in designing an energy efficiency programme to reduce loads in a cost-effective manner. Partnered with South African energy leaders, the Center is providing modeling options, feedback on regulatory language, and best practices on policy development and programme targets to develop an energy efficiency incentive programme for the commercial sector tailored to the country’s specific situation. While the programme has not yet launched, it has the potential to make fundamental progress toward the country’s carbon reduction goals and improve quality of life for citizens with unreliable electricity access.
Policy-makers in other countries are also reaching out to the Clean Energy Solutions Center for help in developing an energy audit programme for their commercial and industrial sectors. In Indonesia, the Center is collaborating with policy-makers to create an energy audit certification program with appropriate curriculum and training program. The goal is to build sustained capacity through workforce development and job creation that spurs economic development in Indonesian communities.
Innovative technologies, programmes, and policies, like those in South Africa and Indonesia, are accelerating the transition to clean energy around the world. As with many sectors, accessing the resources and networks which will enable collaboration and information sharing to make a government’s clean energy vision a reality, finding those resources and networks can be a challenge. To overcome some of these challenges, the Clean Energy Solutions Center seeks to foster international collaboration on policy innovations through expert assistance, peer-to-peer learning, and analysis tools to harness expertise and resources from around the world.
With so much information about clean energy available on the web, the Clean Energy Solutions Center aims to eliminate the clutter and provide a single source of expertise drawn from global best practices. Subsequent to our launch, the Center has responded to requests for expert policy assistance ranging from developing energy efficiency incentive programmes, policy analysis, mapping renewable energy resources, creating policy networks, and developing certification programmes. This policy assistance is made available to representatives from government agencies or technical institutes assisting governments from any country and is provided at no cost.
As well as our work for the South African and Indonesian governments, the Center has presented nine webinars for policy-makers around the world. These seminars focus on both regions and themes and are available to representatives from government agencies or technical institutes assisting governments from any country and seek to further international collaboration on policy innovations.
As a newly opened resource, the success of the Clean Energy Solutions Center so far can be measured by the popularity of webinars, the number of requests received for assistance, and breadth of the expert resources available. However, we hope that the true measure of our success will be in directly helping to accelerate clean energy policy implementation around the world.
The Clean Energy Solutions Center was designed and is supported by a unique partnership between the Clean Energy Ministerial and the United Nations inter-agency energy mechanism (UN-Energy) in response to the need to deliver timely information to policy makers, energy analysts and advisors, entrepreneurs, investors, NGOs, and international organizations worldwide. Begin your clean energy transition by visiting www.cleanenergysolutions.org
Picture: Courtesy of Dana Smilie, World Bank – Ain Beni Mathar Integrated Combined Cycle Thermo-Solar Power Plant
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