Latest update on sustainable energy finance

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) provides the August update on global developments in sustainable energy finance.


August 2015 Sustainable Energy Finance Update

August 2015 Sustainable Energy1 September 2015: During August 2015, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO), among others, announced sustainable energy project funding and related plans. The UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the UNEP-DTU Partnership (UDP), the Climate Investment Funds (CIF) and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) launched publications and reported on events.

The announced sustainable energy projects are being implemented in Indonesia, the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), Lithuania, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Ukraine and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

In Indonesia, IFC and Asia Green Capital Partners signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to develop a 62.5 MW wind farm, expected to supply electricity for 450,000 people and avoid 120,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per year. The project is funded through IFC’s global infrastructure development fund IFC InfraVentures.

The Government of Lao PDR and the World Bank agreed on a US$32.4 million power grid improvement project to enhance the efficiency and reliability of a local electricity distribution network that suffers from 24% distribution losses.

In Lithuania, EIB and Šiaulių Bankas have committed €98 million for the refurbishment of 475 multi-apartment buildings. The support, in the form of preferential loans to home owners, will be aimed at supporting energy efficiency investments to reduce end-user electricity bills and improve energy security.

In Pakistan, IFC’s Resource Efficiency Advisory programme will provide a local textile producer Nishat Mills with an assessment of energy and water efficiency opportunities at its plant in Lahore. The advisory services will also include an action plan with key priorities, investment estimates, and an implementation schedule.

In Tajikistan, EBRD is providing a US$110 million loan to the national power utility Barki Tojik for the construction of a converter station and related infrastructure. The project will leverage Central Asia’s hydropower potential to reduce CO2 emissions as part a US$1 billion high-voltage transmission line project ‘CASA-1000′ that will enable Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan to sell summer electricity surplus to Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Ukrainian agricultural company Pivdenagropererobka and NEFCO signed a loan agreement aimed at investing in energy efficiency measures, including replacing the company’s fossil-fuel powered steam boiler station with a unit using renewable biomass. Resulting CO2 emission reductions are estimated at 1,054 tonnes per year.

In the MENA region, IFC reported its commitments to infrastructure projects during fiscal year 2015 amounted to US$783 million, of which 47% was mobilized. The investments included: a US$208 million debt package for the construction of seven photovoltaic (PV) plants in Jordan; US$125 million to hydro, solar and wind projects in Pakistan; and US$25 million investment in the power company Alcazar Energy to support the development of renewable energy projects in the region.

On publications, CIF and UDP launched publications on public finance and geothermal energy, and energy efficiency. A CIF report, titled ‘Lessons on the Role of Public Finance in Deploying Geothermal Energy in Developing Countries,’ seeks to support policy-makers and development finance institutions in selecting optimal policy and financing tools for fast and cost-effective deployment of geothermal energy for electricity.

UDP reported on four new regional reports on energy efficiency coordinated by the Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency (C2E2). The reports, covering Africa, Southeast Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia, assess existing energy efficiency policies, priorities and opportunities in selected countries from each region to identify key opportunities for support and to share best practices.

UDP also launched a study on ‘Enhancing Access to Electricity for Clean and Efficient Energy Services in Africa’ that examines key electricity access issues in the region through country success stories, and makes recommendations on priority actions for countries and donors.

On event-related news, representatives of 13 African countries gathered in a UNEP workshop in Nairobi, Kenya, from 12-13 August, to explore the feasibility of establishing the Africa Geothermal Centre of Excellence (AGCE) “to enhance the continent’s institutional and infrastructural capacities, and create a critical mass of geothermal scientists and engineers.” AGCE, expected to be based in Kenya, would support the unlocking of the region’s estimated 20 GW geothermal energy potential.

CDB hosted a regional workshop on financing tools and approaches for sustainable energy projects focused on the development of investment grade calculation and risk mitigation aimed at securing investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy.

UDP announced a webinar organized by the Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) initiative, titled ‘Combining Building Efficiency and District Energy for More Sustainable Cities’, to be organized on 1 September 2015, which will “provide an introduction to the connections between buildings and district energy in developing sustainable, low-carbon, and resilient cities.”

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