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Of course, there are also trade-offs to consider. Some standardization can help to reduce deployment costs and make it easier to develop the local expertise required to operate and maintain new technologies and systems. Figure 5: Experience curves for photovoltaics, windmills, and gas turbines in Japan and the United States. In countries that have access to substantial coal supplies, conventional coal-fired steam-electric power plants are often the cheapest near-term option for the addition of large-scale, grid-connected generating capacity.

However, such investments risk locking-in decades of high carbon emissions and, unless modern pollution controls are used, substantial emissions of conventional air pollutants. These economy-environment trade-offs are difficult to resolve, especially for poorer countries that have pressing near-term needs for low-cost power. For those countries, assistance from developed countries will be essential to offset the additional costs and technology demands of more expensive, but cleaner and lower-carbon, technologies.

In the long-term, advanced coal technologies, such as integrated, combined-cycle gasification systems, coupled with carbon capture and sequestration must be successfully commercialized to make continued reliance on coal resources compatible with global carbon limits. In contrast, nuclear technology is far more demanding. China and India are poised to make substantial investments in nuclear power during the next few decades. However, this technology is unlikely to be attractive to smaller developing countries in the short- to mid-term because of the operational and waste management challenges it presents and the high initial investment required.

Advanced coal systems with carbon capture and sequestration are in an even earlier stage of the research, development and deployment trajectory. Because of the high capital cost and the relatively unproved nature of the advanced coal systems, most analysts believe that developed countries will need to take the lead in demonstrating and commercializing this option.

In contrast, the transportation sector has remained, with few exceptions, overwhelmingly dependent on petroleum fuels. This poses a problem to the environment as transportation accounts for roughly one-quarter of global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. Further, the reliance on petroleum fuels fails to address the issue of energy and economic security despite recent trends in world oil markets.

The rapid growth in vehicle ownership and overall travel are potential problems for many developing countries that already are contending with high levels of urban air pollution and seeing a sharp rise in expenditures for imported oil. Both options have drawn increased attention in recent years. A number of countries with large vehicle markets, including China and India, have adopted more stringent emissions standards and are considering the adoption of automobile fuel economy standards.

At the same time, global interest in biofuel development has intensified, due in part to the adoption of aggressive fuel mandates in developed countries like the United States. Brazil is already a world leader in this area, having successfully developed a major domestic sugar cane ethanol industry that is economically competitive with conventional gasoline. These are significant issues that should be addressed expeditiously by a thoughtful re-examination and reform of current biofuel policies in the developing world and also in the developed countries that are behind much of the recent drive to expand global production.

In general, such improvements as the ability to cost-effectively convert ligno-cellulosic feedstocks to ethanol would also greatly enhance the net environmental benefits and greenhouse gas reductions achieved by switching from conventional fuels to biofuels. Further, it is clear that developing countries will be unable to avoid the potentially large and adverse consequences without concerted policy interventions by developing and developed countries alike. None are easy to implement.

All require the active engagement of all sectors of society, including individual consumers and local communities, non-governmental organizations, private businesses and industry, the science and technology research community, governments, intergovernmental institutions and charitable organizations. Developing countries must take the lead in charting new energy courses for themselves. However, developed countries must stand ready to provide support, recognizing that they have a vital stake in the outcome. These policy actions include:. Promoting energy efficiency and adopt minimum efficiency standards for buildings, appliances and equipment, and vehicles.

Identifying the most promising indigenous renewable energy resources and implementing policies to promote their sustainable development. Seeking developed-country support for the effective transfer of advanced energy technologies, while building the indigenous human and institutional capacity needed to support sustainable energy technologies. First, as noted in the introduction, sustainable energy policies are more likely to succeed if they also contribute to other societal and economic development objectives. Second, governments should review policies to maximize positive synergies where they exist and to avoid creating cost-cutting incentives.

In responding to various pressure groups, governments often adopt conflicting policies that undermine each other, at least in part. For example, government efforts to promote energy efficiency can be undercut by subsidies that tend to promote increased consumption. Thus, it may not be possible to pursue a comprehensive set of policies all at once. Nevertheless, governments should recognize that maximum benefits can be achieved by an approach that considers the interactions of different policies, leverages multiple opportunities where possible and responds to the specific needs and constraints of individual countries.

Energy efficiency can be especially important in rapidly industrializing countries as a way to manage rapid demand growth, improve system reliability, ease supply constraints and allow energy the production and distribution infrastructure to 'catch up. Nevertheless, without policy intervention, such improvements are unlikely to keep pace with the continued growth in demand, especially in countries that are still in the early stages of industrialization.

Wind power facts

Moreover, experience shows that market forces by themselves often fail to exploit all cost-effective opportunities to improve energy efficiency. The U. However, the opportunities are also great in some rapidly industrializing economies. China, for example, consumes nine times as much energy per dollar of GDP as does Japan. Overall, a recent assessment of global efficiency opportunities by the McKinsey Global Institute indicated that the average annual rate of decline in global energy intensity could be raised in a cost-effective way to 2. This would be essentially double the recent global rate of decline, which has been averaging approximately 1.

This is a significant finding as it confirms that even relatively small changes in year-to-year improvement of energy efficiency can produce a wide divergence of outcomes over time. The potential benefits of such improvements are very significant in countries that have a rapidly growing demand for new infrastructures, buildings, appliances and equipment. It is usually much easier and more cost-effective to create a high level of efficiency at the outset than to improve efficiency later.

In most situations and all countries, it is essential to have programs that promote more efficient use of energy G-8 RETF, , p. Efficiency standards for appliances, equipment and automobiles have proved to be extremely cost-effective in many developed countries and are often relatively easy to implement compared to other policies, particularly if they can be harmonized with the standards adopted in other large markets.

Efficiency standards or codes for buildings, especially commercial buildings, are extremely important because of the long useful life of most structures. However, to be effective, countries will need to educate architects and builders and develop the means to monitor performance and enforce compliance with the codes. By setting a floor or baseline for energy efficiency, minimum standards can ensure that there will be substantial energy savings in the future.

For example, governments can adopt labeling requirements and pro-active public procurement policies. Intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and charitable associations can encourage or require the use of more efficient equipment. In some countries, utility companies have been successfully enlisted to help promote efficiency by end-use customers. There is a substantial history of such programs in the United States. However, there are also examples in other countries text box A 9 describes a utility-led initiative in India. Cumulatively, these subsidies are less than the taxes imposed on such fossil fuels as petrol G-8 RETF, However, they have several effects that undermine, rather than bolster, sustainable energy objectives.

First, by artificially reducing the price of certain fuels, they distort the market and encourage inefficient levels of consumption that is, consumption in excess of what the society would use if it was necessary to pay a price that was based on market demand or on real costs. Second, fossil fuel subsidies make it more difficult for energy efficiency and cleaner sources of energy to compete.

In fact, many developing-country governments rely on subsidies largely because they lack other reliable mechanisms to make transfer payments to the poor. However, even as a mechanism to alleviate poverty, the use of subsidies is unsound. Because it is often difficult or impossible to restrict the use of subsidies to the neediest households, most of the benefit typically goes to wealthier households, which can afford a higher level of consumption.

They are provided in many countries. They are also addictive and those who benefit from them are usually unwilling to give them up. Thus, analysts may conclude that subsidies should be eliminated or phased out. However, this is difficult for politicians who must renew their mandates periodically. For example, a gradual reduction in subsidies for conventional fossil fuels could be used to provide new subsidies for more sustainable forms of energy or more efficient technologies. Alternatively, public resources that are conserved by reducing subsidies could be directed toward other societal needs.

This is more likely to be practicable for electricity than for portable fuels like petrol or kerosene. For example, low-income households could be offered reduced electrical rates for the first increments of consumption. In summary, creative policy approaches are needed to reconcile the differing interests of energy access expansion and the promotion of sustainable energy outcomes.

The research community and non-governmental organizations NGOs should respond to this challenge and explore possible solutions, including new mechanisms for transferring aid to poor households to enable them to meet their basic needs. In principle, monetizing positive and negative externalities and ensuring that they are included in energy prices is an elegant way to address many issues of sustainability.

Without this step, the market will tend to over-allocate resources where there are negative externalities such as pollution and under-allocate resources where there are positive externalities such as improved energy security. Figure 6 illustrates the results of one attempt by the European Commission to quantify the external costs of global warming, public health, occupational health and material damage associated with different ways of generating electricity.

It shows that the ignored costs that are associated with coal, lignite and oil often greatly exceed the current cost differential with many renewable technologies. However, there is considerable uncertainty about the specific number for external costs that should be assigned to any technology. Governments are continually forced to make decisions based on reasonable judgment and negotiated in a political process in the face of uncertainty.

In practice, the greatest difficulty is likely to be political. Raising energy prices is almost always very unpopular with business leaders and the public. There will be objections that higher energy prices may harm consumers and the economy, particularly competitive industries and low-income households. As in the reduction or removal of subsidies, any effort to internalize externalities must deal with the conflicting desires to raise prices for many conventional forms of energy and to expand access for the poor. This general point applies whether government seeks to internalize externalities by a tax or by environmental regulation.

Because of the parallel situations, some of the approaches used in subsidy reform may be helpful, including the use of a gradual approach and offsetting the impact on poor households by other forms of assistance. If the mechanism used to internalize externalities is an emissions tax, the additional public revenues can be used to provide increased support for social services or other non-energy necessities, or to subsidize other forms of consumption that primarily benefit the poor. The World Bank has concluded that incentives are usually required to motivate the private sector to invest in providing services to the remote and underdeveloped areas where the poor reside.

In those cases, direct financial support from the government or outside groups or institutions may be necessary to implement renewable energy projects. There is ample precedent for such interventions. International aid organizations and other entities have invested millions of dollars in sustainable energy projects in developing countries. However, the record if success for such investments is decidedly mixed.

Many projects have failed over time as a result of inadequate attention to practical problems, local conditions and a need for ongoing maintenance and operational expertise. This can be accomplished in part by taking greater care in the design and implementation of projects and by ensuring that the skills and financial resources needed to sustain new energy installations are in place.

For its part, the research community should put greater emphasis on developing renewable energy technologies 10 that are robust and well-adapted to the specific conditions found in developing countries. In addition, researchers and advocates must avoid the tendency to understate costs or to minimize potential problems with the technologies that they develop. Other aspects of this challenge are discussed in subsequent sections, which address the importance of expanding and improving international technology transfer initiatives and the need to build institutional and human capacity.

This will likely continue. However, this does not mean that there is no role for developing countries. Some of the larger developing countries have sufficient resources to permit them to invest significantly in technology. Brazil, for example, has nurtured a viable domestic biofuels industry through all stages of technology development, deployment and commercialization see Box C At that conference, developing-country negotiators called for language that explicitly linked mitigation action by developing countries to "measurable, reportable and verifiable" support for technology, finance and capacity-building.

Effective mechanisms and enhanced means for the removal of obstacles to, and provision of, financial and other incentives for the scaling up of the development and transfer of technology to developing countries to promote access to environmentally sound technologies. Ways to accelerate deployment, diffusion and transfer of affordable environmentally sound technologies.

The development of effective mechanisms and tools for technology cooperation in specific sectors. In the past, too many well-intended projects have failed to live up to expectations. To ensure that rural areas of developing countries do not become graveyards for sustainable energy technologies, sustained attention must be paid by both host and donor nations to the human and institutional capacities needed to support these technologies on a long-term basis UNDP, , p.

Thus, there is an urgent need to develop skills to produce, market, install, operate and maintain sustainable energy technologies in developing countries. Ensuring that as much of this capacity-building as possible takes place in local communities and that companies based in the host country have the potential to provide additional benefits in local job creation and economic development because project developers and operators are likely to be more effective if they have close ties to the population that will use the technology.

Such institutes could also help to provide independent assessments of alternative technologies and policy choices and explore practical strategies for overcoming real-world barriers to further deployment of sustainable energy technologies UNDP, , p. The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research CGIAR has successfully used this approach to disseminate technological and scientific advances in agriculture to developing countries.

This may provide a promising model for the energy field. Developing countries must not be passive bystanders in that process. They have everything to gain by leveraging future investments to build their indigenous human and institutional capacities and by taking the lead in adapting and improving sustainable energy technologies to suit their particular needs.

Therefore this recommendation stands somewhat apart from the others discussed here, which tend to be motivated by broader environmental and energy security concerns. It has been estimated that exposure to indoor pollution from the use of fuels like wood and dung for cooking and space heating causes as many as 1. In addition, the need to gather fuel can cause local environmental degradation and take up great amounts of time, particularly for women and girls that might otherwise be available for more productive activities.

A shift away from traditional fuels for cooking could marginally increase demand for commercial fuels like propane, natural gas or electricity. The change would be quite small in relation to overall energy requirements and more than justified from a social welfare perspective. Various programs have been instituted to distribute improved cook stoves to poor households in rural areas.

One is described in Box D Many developing countries have been attempting to restructure their energy sectors, but are finding it difficult to implement reforms. The reasons include the multiplicity of actors involved, the changing perceptions of the relative roles of the market and governments, and the accumulation of policies of past decades, many of which may have made sense when they were proposed, but now impose unsustainable burdens. Meanwhile, a sharp run-up in world energy prices over the last two years and growing concerns about the supply of conventional petroleum and natural gas, in some parts of the world , combined with projections of continued strong growth of demand globally and greater awareness of the threats posed by climate change, have brought a heightened sense of urgency to national and international energy policy debates.

Whether governments are chiefly concerned with economic growth, environmental protection or energy security, it is clear that a continuation of current energy trends will have many undesirable consequences at best, and risk grave, global threats to the well-being of the human race at worst. Not only are there obvious resource constraints, but also a significant part of the population may lack access to basic energy services.

In the near term, many sustainable energy technologies are likely to remain more expensive than their conventional counterparts. Even when they are cost-effective, as is already the case for many efficient technologies, powerful market failures and barriers often stand in the way. Changing the incentives and overcoming those barriers is now more a question of political will and coordination than one of adequate resources at least at the global level.

In surveying the current landscape, one can find ample justifications for a profoundly pessimistic view—or an equally optimistic view. Which outlook proves more accurate will depend to a large extent on how quickly developed and developing countries recognize and begin to act upon their shared stake in achieving positive outcomes that can be managed only by working together.

Adams, H. Ausubel, J. Marchetti Canadell, J. Economis t, The Dawn of Micropower, 5 August , pp. Grubler, A. De Moore, A. Calamai Kates, R. Martinot, E. Energy Environ, 27 Nakicenovic, N. Rogner, H. Popescu Chapter 1, World Energy Assessment , pp. Rosa, L.

Alternate Energy

Ribeiro United Nations Development Programme WEHAB World Bank Global growth rates moderated somewhat in the s with the economic contraction of a group of countries primarily in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia that were transitioning from centrally planned economies to market-based systems. Strong global growth resumed after Recently, high energy prices and recessionary pressures that have caused a diminution of global credit and an increase in the volatility of several major currencies may again be causing a global slowdown.

The ratio is between and in coal. It is in oil and in natural gas. However, not all sources of carbon have impact climate change equally. Provided that biomass feedstocks are managed sustainably, the carbon dioxide that is released by the combustion of biomass fuels is offset by an equivalent uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to support the growth of new biomass.

As a result, there is, at equilibrium, no net change in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations. In contrast, the combustion of coal and other fossil fuels puts into the atmosphere carbon that has been stored - and thus kept out of circulation - for millennia. It therefore produces a net increase in atmospheric concentrations. Together, human activities, primarily fossil fuel combustion and land use changes, are believed to be responsible for an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration of approximately 40 percent since pre-industrial times from roughly parts per million around to parts per million in IPCC, , Fourth Assessment Report , Summary for Policymakers , p.

The program was motivated in part by the need to address peak power shortages. The estimated program benefits included a percent increase in CFL sales, a reduction of 12 megawatts in peak-power demand, energy savings of 10 megawatt-hours and a total of tonnes of carbon dioxide reductions. The utility and industry formed a novel and replicable partnership, in which BESCOM used its billing and collection system to pass on energy savings to customers and CFL vendors agreed to meet international product specifications and provide improved warranties.

Renewable Energies for Sustainable Development

Except for the program design, which was funded by the U. The BELP program was widely viewed as a success and subsequently served as a model for lighting programs sponsored by other companies. Several vendors have agreed to reduce their prices by an across-the-board carbon financing mechanism, and BESCOM has continued to scale-up its program.

Initially, Grameen Shakti found that long distances, poor transport infrastructure, periodically flooded and impassable roads, low literacy rates, lack of technical skills and transactions based on barter contributed to high transaction costs and difficulty in building consumer confidence in their product.

In , a Global Environment Facility GEF grant enabled Grameen Shakti to offer improved credit terms to its customers and install thousands of systems. It also found that a critical mass of installations in an area of the order of systems built consumer confidence, making it easier and less time consuming to expand the customer base G8, RETF, Grameen Shakti now expects to be able to draw additional financing for scale-up activities from commercial banks.

However, as supply concerns faded, so did these programs. However, a full-scale biofuel effort did not begin until 75 years later when the National Alcohol Program Pro-Alcool was launched in in response to a dramatic rise in international oil prices and the resulting adverse balance of payments. Brazil now has the largest program of commercial biomass utilization in the world UNDP, , p.

Although automobiles that run on hydrated alcohol are no longer produced in Brazil, those that run on blends sustain an annual production of , barrels of ethanol per day. It has created significant numbers of skilled and semi-skilled jobs, played a significant role in developing a strong agro-industrial base, reduced urban environmental pollution by reducing carbon monoxide emissions and improved the global environment by curbing carbon dioxide emissions. Subsidies for this program were gradually reduced and then eliminated completely in Not surprisingly, the program seems to flourish most when international oil prices are high and international sugar prices are low.

Between the mids and the mids, more than , of these stoves were distributed. Today, some 16 percent of rural households in Kenya also use these more efficient jiko stoves. The program promotes a stove that is made of local ceramic and metal components by the same artisans who make traditional stoves. Developing countries must take the lead in charting new energy courses for themselves. However, developed countries must stand ready to provide support, recognizing that they have a vital stake in the outcome. These policy actions include:. Promoting energy efficiency and adopt minimum efficiency standards for buildings, appliances and equipment, and vehicles.

Identifying the most promising indigenous renewable energy resources and implementing policies to promote their sustainable development. Seeking developed-country support for the effective transfer of advanced energy technologies, while building the indigenous human and institutional capacity needed to support sustainable energy technologies.

First, as noted in the introduction, sustainable energy policies are more likely to succeed if they also contribute to other societal and economic development objectives.

Renewable Energy : The Energy

Second, governments should review policies to maximize positive synergies where they exist and to avoid creating cost-cutting incentives. In responding to various pressure groups, governments often adopt conflicting policies that undermine each other, at least in part. For example, government efforts to promote energy efficiency can be undercut by subsidies that tend to promote increased consumption. Thus, it may not be possible to pursue a comprehensive set of policies all at once. Nevertheless, governments should recognize that maximum benefits can be achieved by an approach that considers the interactions of different policies, leverages multiple opportunities where possible and responds to the specific needs and constraints of individual countries.

Energy efficiency can be especially important in rapidly industrializing countries as a way to manage rapid demand growth, improve system reliability, ease supply constraints and allow energy the production and distribution infrastructure to 'catch up. Nevertheless, without policy intervention, such improvements are unlikely to keep pace with the continued growth in demand, especially in countries that are still in the early stages of industrialization.

Moreover, experience shows that market forces by themselves often fail to exploit all cost-effective opportunities to improve energy efficiency. The U. However, the opportunities are also great in some rapidly industrializing economies. China, for example, consumes nine times as much energy per dollar of GDP as does Japan.

Overall, a recent assessment of global efficiency opportunities by the McKinsey Global Institute indicated that the average annual rate of decline in global energy intensity could be raised in a cost-effective way to 2. This would be essentially double the recent global rate of decline, which has been averaging approximately 1. This is a significant finding as it confirms that even relatively small changes in year-to-year improvement of energy efficiency can produce a wide divergence of outcomes over time.

The potential benefits of such improvements are very significant in countries that have a rapidly growing demand for new infrastructures, buildings, appliances and equipment. It is usually much easier and more cost-effective to create a high level of efficiency at the outset than to improve efficiency later. In most situations and all countries, it is essential to have programs that promote more efficient use of energy G-8 RETF, , p.

Efficiency standards for appliances, equipment and automobiles have proved to be extremely cost-effective in many developed countries and are often relatively easy to implement compared to other policies, particularly if they can be harmonized with the standards adopted in other large markets. Efficiency standards or codes for buildings, especially commercial buildings, are extremely important because of the long useful life of most structures.

However, to be effective, countries will need to educate architects and builders and develop the means to monitor performance and enforce compliance with the codes. By setting a floor or baseline for energy efficiency, minimum standards can ensure that there will be substantial energy savings in the future. For example, governments can adopt labeling requirements and pro-active public procurement policies. Intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and charitable associations can encourage or require the use of more efficient equipment.

In some countries, utility companies have been successfully enlisted to help promote efficiency by end-use customers. There is a substantial history of such programs in the United States. However, there are also examples in other countries text box A 9 describes a utility-led initiative in India. Cumulatively, these subsidies are less than the taxes imposed on such fossil fuels as petrol G-8 RETF, However, they have several effects that undermine, rather than bolster, sustainable energy objectives.

First, by artificially reducing the price of certain fuels, they distort the market and encourage inefficient levels of consumption that is, consumption in excess of what the society would use if it was necessary to pay a price that was based on market demand or on real costs.

Second, fossil fuel subsidies make it more difficult for energy efficiency and cleaner sources of energy to compete. In fact, many developing-country governments rely on subsidies largely because they lack other reliable mechanisms to make transfer payments to the poor. However, even as a mechanism to alleviate poverty, the use of subsidies is unsound. Because it is often difficult or impossible to restrict the use of subsidies to the neediest households, most of the benefit typically goes to wealthier households, which can afford a higher level of consumption.

They are provided in many countries. They are also addictive and those who benefit from them are usually unwilling to give them up. Thus, analysts may conclude that subsidies should be eliminated or phased out. However, this is difficult for politicians who must renew their mandates periodically. For example, a gradual reduction in subsidies for conventional fossil fuels could be used to provide new subsidies for more sustainable forms of energy or more efficient technologies. Alternatively, public resources that are conserved by reducing subsidies could be directed toward other societal needs.

This is more likely to be practicable for electricity than for portable fuels like petrol or kerosene. For example, low-income households could be offered reduced electrical rates for the first increments of consumption. In summary, creative policy approaches are needed to reconcile the differing interests of energy access expansion and the promotion of sustainable energy outcomes. The research community and non-governmental organizations NGOs should respond to this challenge and explore possible solutions, including new mechanisms for transferring aid to poor households to enable them to meet their basic needs.

In principle, monetizing positive and negative externalities and ensuring that they are included in energy prices is an elegant way to address many issues of sustainability. Without this step, the market will tend to over-allocate resources where there are negative externalities such as pollution and under-allocate resources where there are positive externalities such as improved energy security.

Figure 6 illustrates the results of one attempt by the European Commission to quantify the external costs of global warming, public health, occupational health and material damage associated with different ways of generating electricity. It shows that the ignored costs that are associated with coal, lignite and oil often greatly exceed the current cost differential with many renewable technologies. However, there is considerable uncertainty about the specific number for external costs that should be assigned to any technology.

Governments are continually forced to make decisions based on reasonable judgment and negotiated in a political process in the face of uncertainty. In practice, the greatest difficulty is likely to be political. Raising energy prices is almost always very unpopular with business leaders and the public. There will be objections that higher energy prices may harm consumers and the economy, particularly competitive industries and low-income households.

As in the reduction or removal of subsidies, any effort to internalize externalities must deal with the conflicting desires to raise prices for many conventional forms of energy and to expand access for the poor. This general point applies whether government seeks to internalize externalities by a tax or by environmental regulation.

Because of the parallel situations, some of the approaches used in subsidy reform may be helpful, including the use of a gradual approach and offsetting the impact on poor households by other forms of assistance. If the mechanism used to internalize externalities is an emissions tax, the additional public revenues can be used to provide increased support for social services or other non-energy necessities, or to subsidize other forms of consumption that primarily benefit the poor. The World Bank has concluded that incentives are usually required to motivate the private sector to invest in providing services to the remote and underdeveloped areas where the poor reside.

In those cases, direct financial support from the government or outside groups or institutions may be necessary to implement renewable energy projects. There is ample precedent for such interventions. International aid organizations and other entities have invested millions of dollars in sustainable energy projects in developing countries.

However, the record if success for such investments is decidedly mixed. Many projects have failed over time as a result of inadequate attention to practical problems, local conditions and a need for ongoing maintenance and operational expertise. This can be accomplished in part by taking greater care in the design and implementation of projects and by ensuring that the skills and financial resources needed to sustain new energy installations are in place.

For its part, the research community should put greater emphasis on developing renewable energy technologies 10 that are robust and well-adapted to the specific conditions found in developing countries. In addition, researchers and advocates must avoid the tendency to understate costs or to minimize potential problems with the technologies that they develop. Other aspects of this challenge are discussed in subsequent sections, which address the importance of expanding and improving international technology transfer initiatives and the need to build institutional and human capacity. This will likely continue.

However, this does not mean that there is no role for developing countries. Some of the larger developing countries have sufficient resources to permit them to invest significantly in technology. Brazil, for example, has nurtured a viable domestic biofuels industry through all stages of technology development, deployment and commercialization see Box C At that conference, developing-country negotiators called for language that explicitly linked mitigation action by developing countries to "measurable, reportable and verifiable" support for technology, finance and capacity-building.

Effective mechanisms and enhanced means for the removal of obstacles to, and provision of, financial and other incentives for the scaling up of the development and transfer of technology to developing countries to promote access to environmentally sound technologies. Ways to accelerate deployment, diffusion and transfer of affordable environmentally sound technologies. The development of effective mechanisms and tools for technology cooperation in specific sectors.

In the past, too many well-intended projects have failed to live up to expectations. To ensure that rural areas of developing countries do not become graveyards for sustainable energy technologies, sustained attention must be paid by both host and donor nations to the human and institutional capacities needed to support these technologies on a long-term basis UNDP, , p. Thus, there is an urgent need to develop skills to produce, market, install, operate and maintain sustainable energy technologies in developing countries.


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Ensuring that as much of this capacity-building as possible takes place in local communities and that companies based in the host country have the potential to provide additional benefits in local job creation and economic development because project developers and operators are likely to be more effective if they have close ties to the population that will use the technology.

Such institutes could also help to provide independent assessments of alternative technologies and policy choices and explore practical strategies for overcoming real-world barriers to further deployment of sustainable energy technologies UNDP, , p. The Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research CGIAR has successfully used this approach to disseminate technological and scientific advances in agriculture to developing countries. This may provide a promising model for the energy field. Developing countries must not be passive bystanders in that process.

They have everything to gain by leveraging future investments to build their indigenous human and institutional capacities and by taking the lead in adapting and improving sustainable energy technologies to suit their particular needs. Therefore this recommendation stands somewhat apart from the others discussed here, which tend to be motivated by broader environmental and energy security concerns. It has been estimated that exposure to indoor pollution from the use of fuels like wood and dung for cooking and space heating causes as many as 1.

In addition, the need to gather fuel can cause local environmental degradation and take up great amounts of time, particularly for women and girls that might otherwise be available for more productive activities. A shift away from traditional fuels for cooking could marginally increase demand for commercial fuels like propane, natural gas or electricity. The change would be quite small in relation to overall energy requirements and more than justified from a social welfare perspective. Various programs have been instituted to distribute improved cook stoves to poor households in rural areas.

One is described in Box D Many developing countries have been attempting to restructure their energy sectors, but are finding it difficult to implement reforms. The reasons include the multiplicity of actors involved, the changing perceptions of the relative roles of the market and governments, and the accumulation of policies of past decades, many of which may have made sense when they were proposed, but now impose unsustainable burdens.

Meanwhile, a sharp run-up in world energy prices over the last two years and growing concerns about the supply of conventional petroleum and natural gas, in some parts of the world , combined with projections of continued strong growth of demand globally and greater awareness of the threats posed by climate change, have brought a heightened sense of urgency to national and international energy policy debates. Whether governments are chiefly concerned with economic growth, environmental protection or energy security, it is clear that a continuation of current energy trends will have many undesirable consequences at best, and risk grave, global threats to the well-being of the human race at worst.

Not only are there obvious resource constraints, but also a significant part of the population may lack access to basic energy services. In the near term, many sustainable energy technologies are likely to remain more expensive than their conventional counterparts. Even when they are cost-effective, as is already the case for many efficient technologies, powerful market failures and barriers often stand in the way.

Changing the incentives and overcoming those barriers is now more a question of political will and coordination than one of adequate resources at least at the global level. In surveying the current landscape, one can find ample justifications for a profoundly pessimistic view—or an equally optimistic view. Which outlook proves more accurate will depend to a large extent on how quickly developed and developing countries recognize and begin to act upon their shared stake in achieving positive outcomes that can be managed only by working together.

Multi-Criteria Decision-Making in the Implementation of Renewable Energy Sources

Adams, H. Ausubel, J. Marchetti Canadell, J. Economis t, The Dawn of Micropower, 5 August , pp. Grubler, A. De Moore, A. Calamai Kates, R. Martinot, E. Energy Environ, 27 Nakicenovic, N. Rogner, H. Popescu Chapter 1, World Energy Assessment , pp. Rosa, L. Ribeiro United Nations Development Programme WEHAB World Bank Global growth rates moderated somewhat in the s with the economic contraction of a group of countries primarily in Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia that were transitioning from centrally planned economies to market-based systems.

Strong global growth resumed after Recently, high energy prices and recessionary pressures that have caused a diminution of global credit and an increase in the volatility of several major currencies may again be causing a global slowdown. The ratio is between and in coal.

It is in oil and in natural gas.


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  5. However, not all sources of carbon have impact climate change equally. Provided that biomass feedstocks are managed sustainably, the carbon dioxide that is released by the combustion of biomass fuels is offset by an equivalent uptake of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to support the growth of new biomass. As a result, there is, at equilibrium, no net change in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations.

    In contrast, the combustion of coal and other fossil fuels puts into the atmosphere carbon that has been stored - and thus kept out of circulation - for millennia. It therefore produces a net increase in atmospheric concentrations. Together, human activities, primarily fossil fuel combustion and land use changes, are believed to be responsible for an increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration of approximately 40 percent since pre-industrial times from roughly parts per million around to parts per million in IPCC, , Fourth Assessment Report , Summary for Policymakers , p.

    The program was motivated in part by the need to address peak power shortages. The estimated program benefits included a percent increase in CFL sales, a reduction of 12 megawatts in peak-power demand, energy savings of 10 megawatt-hours and a total of tonnes of carbon dioxide reductions. The utility and industry formed a novel and replicable partnership, in which BESCOM used its billing and collection system to pass on energy savings to customers and CFL vendors agreed to meet international product specifications and provide improved warranties.

    Except for the program design, which was funded by the U. The BELP program was widely viewed as a success and subsequently served as a model for lighting programs sponsored by other companies. Several vendors have agreed to reduce their prices by an across-the-board carbon financing mechanism, and BESCOM has continued to scale-up its program. Initially, Grameen Shakti found that long distances, poor transport infrastructure, periodically flooded and impassable roads, low literacy rates, lack of technical skills and transactions based on barter contributed to high transaction costs and difficulty in building consumer confidence in their product.

    In , a Global Environment Facility GEF grant enabled Grameen Shakti to offer improved credit terms to its customers and install thousands of systems. It also found that a critical mass of installations in an area of the order of systems built consumer confidence, making it easier and less time consuming to expand the customer base G8, RETF, Grameen Shakti now expects to be able to draw additional financing for scale-up activities from commercial banks.

    However, as supply concerns faded, so did these programs. However, a full-scale biofuel effort did not begin until 75 years later when the National Alcohol Program Pro-Alcool was launched in in response to a dramatic rise in international oil prices and the resulting adverse balance of payments. Brazil now has the largest program of commercial biomass utilization in the world UNDP, , p. Although automobiles that run on hydrated alcohol are no longer produced in Brazil, those that run on blends sustain an annual production of , barrels of ethanol per day.

    It has created significant numbers of skilled and semi-skilled jobs, played a significant role in developing a strong agro-industrial base, reduced urban environmental pollution by reducing carbon monoxide emissions and improved the global environment by curbing carbon dioxide emissions. Subsidies for this program were gradually reduced and then eliminated completely in Not surprisingly, the program seems to flourish most when international oil prices are high and international sugar prices are low.

    Between the mids and the mids, more than , of these stoves were distributed. Today, some 16 percent of rural households in Kenya also use these more efficient jiko stoves. The program promotes a stove that is made of local ceramic and metal components by the same artisans who make traditional stoves. The new stoves do not differ radically from traditional all-metal stoves, except that their energy efficiency is close to 30 percent.

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    The remarkable feature of this program is that it has received no government subsidies. However, the stove still requires charcoal, which must be produced and transported. Charcoal production has been very inefficient historically and will need attention if the program is to reach its full environmental potential. S [Online], 2. Independent consultant, mtatsutani gmail. A multidisciplinary journal devoted to the study of interactions between environment and society. Contents - Previous document.

    Dilip Ahuja and Marika Tatsutani. Abstract Overall, at least 1. Outline Introduction. De-carbonization and Diversification, Especially in the Production of Electricity. Reduction of conventional pollutants associated with energy use. Editor's notes This paper has been reviewed by two anonymous referees This paper is a revised version of a report originally published by The Academy of Science for the developing World TWAS.

    Full text PDF k Send by e-mail. Introduction 1 Since the dawn of the industrial age, the ability to harness and use different forms of energy has transformed living conditions for billions of people, enabling them to enjoy a level of comfort and mobility that is unprecedented in human history, and freed them to perform increasingly productive tasks. Historic Energy Trends 5 The energy use of human societies has historically been marked by four broad trends: Rising consumption as societies industrialize, gain wealth and shift from traditional sources of energy mostly biomass-based fuels such as wood, dung and charcoal to commercial forms of energy primarily fossil fuels.

    Rising Consumption and the Transition to Commercial Forms of Energy 7 Before the industrial revolution, humans relied on natural energy flows and animal and human power for heat, light and work. The ratio is between Zoom Original jpeg, 76k. Figure 5: Experience curves for photovoltaics, windmills, and gas turbines in Japan and the United States Zoom Original jpeg, 64k.

    Table 3. Zoom Original jpeg, 26k. Bibliography Adams, H. Economist , Survey of Energy, 10 February Top of page.