Global Commission to End Energy Poverty: Inception Report

Global Commission to End Energy Poverty: Inception Report (MIT Energy Initiative, Sept 2019, 41p + 15p preface)

Some 850 million people still lack access to energy.  “The Integrated Distribution Framework” is proposed, to integrate “energy access into financially sustainable utility concession agreements.  Seeking “universal energy access” to end energy poverty (Sustainable Development Goal #7) is especially important in sub-Saharan Africa where more than half of the population lacks access.

Integrated Distribution Framework:

  • “Inclusiveness: Inclusive electrification within a designated region requires there to be an entity that assumes real—not just formal—responsibility for serving all consumers in the region, irrespective of their level of demand and under minimum quality conditions. In some low-access countries, establishing this actual commitment within designated region may be accomplished in a single step, or it may be the end step in a multi-year evolutionary process.
  • Permanence: Access to electricity must be assured indefinitely—that is, permanently over time. This requires an institution in charge with a long-term vision and commitment.
  • A mix of delivery modes: The least-cost electrification plan to meet rural demand in a territory will involve a combination of on- and off-grid modes that distribution-responsible entities must deploy efficiently, balancing cost, reliability, and customer preferences, among other factors.
  • Harnessing external resources: Without some external intervention it is difficult to imagine how most incumbent discos could substantially improve their present dire technical, managerial, and financial conditions. Many will have to partner with external entities able to access capital, advanced technologies, and management expertise, so that reliable service, loss reduction, and a new consumer engagement approach can be achieved.”
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