Please activate JavaScript!
Please install Adobe Flash Player, click here for download

ECOWAS Status Report - Sustainable Energy Access

| 54 04 POLICY AND TARGET OVERVIEW Worldwide, targets and policies continue to be a critical component of strategies to promote the development and deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency solutions. Recognising the essential role that access to a sustainable, reliable energy supply plays in all aspects of national development, the international community has committed to ensuring universal access to sustainable energy under the SE4ALL initiative.1 To meet these objectives, policymakers in ECOWAS Member States and around the world have turned to renewable energy. Renewable energy technologies frequently require the support of well-designed policies and programmes to overcome barriers to their deployment. Common challenges include policy, regulatory, financing, investment, technology, and capacity barriers; limited public awareness; a lack of standards and quality control; and inadequate resource assessments.2 As in many countries worldwide, each ECOWAS Member State faces a variable mix of barriers and opportunities. Policymakers must therefore first identify the specific barriers their country faces and then design a targeted mix of policies designed to mitigate them. Within ECOWAS, as is the case worldwide, most renewable energy policies and targets enacted to date have focussed on supporting developments in the electricity sector. However, policies and targets for scaling up renewable energy in primary/final energy, heating and cooling, and transportation are now also being implemented. In addition, policies and targets for expanding energy access are increasingly specifying the use of renewables. Energy efficiency is also becoming an increasingly critical component of national energy sector development. (See Chapter 3.) Policies and targets for efficiency are being designed and enacted to conserve and improve energy use across a wide range of sectors where energy is produced, distributed, and consumed, including lighting, electricity distribution, cooking, and buildings. Taken together, these policies and targets are helping to transform the energy mix of the ECOWAS region. As of early 2014, renewable energy support policies were in place at the national or state/provincial level in 138 countries worldwide, with targets established in 144 countries.3 The initial expansion of renewable energy policies and targets in the early-to- mid 2000s was led primarily by industrialised countries. However, in recent years developing and emerging economies have taken a leading role in policy expansion.4 These countries accounted for 95 of the 144 countries with renewable support policies in place by early 2014, up from an estimated 15 in 2005.xix,5 In Africa, 35 of the continent’s 54 countries had adopted a renewable energy policy by early 2014, while 37 had adopted one or more renewable energy targets. This rapid expansion is impressive considering that as recently as 2005, no policies or targets for renewable energy development had been identified on the African continent.6 ECOWAS has taken a strong role in designing an enabling policy environment to further the advancement of renewable energy. The ECOWAS and UEMOA White Paper for a Regional Policy set the stage by laying out ambitious goals for achieving high-levels of energy and electricity access in the region. This has served as the basis for the region’s renewable energy development framework and the ambitious activities led by ECOWAS and ECREEE. (See Chapter 1.) The enactment of the EREP and the EEEP solidified the region as a global sustainable energy leader. The EREP aligns Member States behind a set of ambitious goals and priority initiatives across a multitude of sectors, including on- and off-grid electricity, heating, and transportation. (See Tables throughout this section.) The EEEP formalised the role of energy efficiency as an essential tool to meet the region’s energy access challenge and outlines a similar set of policies and targets.7 Together, these policies outline the region’s energy development pathway. The formation of NREAPs for each Member State, which seek to streamline regional policy into national action plans, is expected by December 2014. Expanding on the regional goals established under the EREP and EEEP, this chapter explores the ECOWAS sustainable energy policy landscape at the national level. The SE4ALL framework has also looked to build on the national efforts through the Action Agendas being developed across the region. xix. This estimate of 15 countries in 2005 is based on the best information available to REN21 at the time of the writing of the 2014 Renewables Global Status Report. There are 138 developing and emerging economies, as defined as countries falling within the low-income, lower-middle income, and upper-middle income classifications of the World Bank Country and Lending Groups classification for the 2014 fiscal year.

Pages Overview