This report was produced by Danish Energy Management (DEM) on behalf of the European Commission. This study analyses the achievements made in six mini-grid projects supported by the ACP-EU Energy Facility in Tanzania and Madagascar to understand the increase in PUE and the impact that energy access has had:

- SDG1: Mini-grid access has improved the quality of life for 70% of the communities that have been connected to the mini-grid in Tanzania and Madagascar. A quarter of households reported that they had more disposable income, which was primarily spent on food and school fees. Twenty percent of households reported an improvement in health services.

- SDG5: As users of energy, women value convenience and lighting for studying, as well as the time saved from travelling to charge mobile phones. Women entrepreneurs report being empowered to provide additional services dependent on electricity and an enthusiasm to expand their businesses, despite a self-reported lack of knowledge or finances.

- SDG7: The introduction of electricity access to the six projects areas has resulted in a 97% reduction in the use of kerosene and 89% reduction in the use of battery powered torches. Solar home system usage reduced by 90%, indicating that the quality of light and convenience is valued cost.

- SDG8: The workforce of the MSMEs interviewed had increased by 2.5 times, which they attributed primarily to a more diverse portfolio of activities to meet local demand, and increased revenue. The opportunity to become self-employed was valued, both due to the independence to determine how much time was spent on which activities but also due to a better income per hour of work put in.

For more information, please download the report from DEM.

Additional Info

  • Author DEM
  • Publication Date Saturday, 31 August 2019

The New Climate Institute, released in Nov 2019 the report named "The role of renewable energy mini-grids in Kenya’s electricity sector". It states that mini-grids in addition to being the most cost-effective option for achieving rural electrification in some areas, mini-grids could also have positive economic and social impacts, including synergies with national development objectives and the SDGs. Find out more by downloading the report.

Additional Info

On 2 July 2019, the Kenya Ministry of Energy and the Green Mini Grid Facility Kenya hosted a Workshop entitled “Productive Use of Energy Applications in Off-Grid Energy Systems Workshop,” which focused on the opportunity and challenges in rural electrification, economic development and mini grid businesses in Kenya. The purpose of the workshop was to facilitate dialogue between critical public and private sector actors needed to develop scalable, financially and environmentally sustainable solutions for increasing access to electricity in rural areas, on grid and off grid, that create greater opportunity for Kenyans. Find the report of this event, as well as the Presentations made during this day.

Additional Info

WASHINGTON, June 25, 2019— Mini grids, previously viewed as a niche solution, can provide electricity to as many as 500 million people by 2030, helping close the energy access gap, according to a new World Bank report. The combination of falling costs, dramatic increase in quality of service, and enabling policies has made mini grids a scalable option to complement grid extension and solar home systems.

Mini Grids for Half a Billion People: Market Outlook and Handbook for Decision Makers is the most comprehensive study on mini grids to date. It provides policy makers, investors, and developers with insights on how mini grids can be scaled up.  It takes stock of the global market and industry, analyses costs and technological innovations, and shows the importance of microfinance and income-generating uses of electricity.  

Compared with main grid and solar home systems, mini grids are a more viable solution for areas with high population density and medium electricity demand. Extending main grid to serve remote communities is often prohibitively expensive. Globally, at least 19,000 mini grids are already installed in 134 countries, representing a total investment of $28 billion and providing electricity to around 47 million people. Most are deployed in Asia, while Africa has the largest share of planned mini grids.

At present the total mini grid investment in countries with low levels of electricity access in Africa and Asia totals $5 billion. It is estimated that $220 billion is needed to connect 500 million people to 210,000 mini grids in these regions by 2030. Across the globe, countries need to actively mobilize private sector investment. This can be achieved by setting up policies that support comprehensive electrification programs, promoting viable business models, and providing public funding, for example through performance-based grants.

Mini grids are now one of the core solutions for closing the energy access gap. We see great potential for mini grid development at scale and are working with countries to actively mobilize public and private investment,” said Riccardo Puliti, Senior Director of Energy and Extractives at the World Bank. “The World Bank has been scaling up its support to mini grids while helping countries develop comprehensive electrification programs. Our commitments to mini grids represent about one-quarter of total investment by the public and private sector in our client countries. The Bank’s portfolio spans 37 mini grids projects in 33 countries, with a total commitment of more than $660 million. This investment is expected to leverage an additional $1.1 billion in cofinancing.”

In addition to being cost-efficient, mini grids have many other benefits. They have positive environmental impacts: 210,000 mini grids powered by solar energy would help avoid 1.5 billion tons of CO2 emissions globally. They also offer national utilities a win-win solution in the electricity sector by paving the way for more financially viable future grid expansion.

By the time the main grid arrives, significant demand for electricity would already exist and customers would have greater ability to pay through the generation of productive uses made possible by mini grids.

Funding for the report was provided by the World Bank’s Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP).

 

PRESS RELEASE NO: 2019/EEX/207

Additional Info

  • Author World Bank
  • Publication Date Tuesday, 25 June 2019

This guide aims to help practitioners assess whether milling is an appropriate, beneficial and financially viable productive application, both for a community and for a mini-grid developer. It also provides guidance for practitioners on how to operationalize a milling PU, recognizing the complexity of doing so.

Additional Info

  • Author GMG Kenya
  • Publication Date Monday, 10 December 2018

The guide is the result of the GMG Facility Kenya’s extensive work to support mini-grid developers and the mini-grid industry at large to address sector level barriers to expanding off-grid electrification, with an emphasis on increasing market access and social inclusion for bottom of the pyramid (BoP) consumers and businesses.

Attached are the ICE Making Calculator and a report on ice making.

Additional Info

  • Author GMG Kenya
  • Publication Date Monday, 10 December 2018
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