CESET presents on community energy in East Africa at the GEM 2023

12th April, 2023

GEM 2023 provided the forum for dialogue on energy ideas and the opportunity to showcase the latest technological developments in global energy issues. Amare presented “Community Energy and Sustainable Energy Transitions in East Africa: Thinking Strategically About Policy Impact: Ethiopian Case” on 7th March 2023. The research work focuses on policy perspective for sustainable transition energy in East Africa. The Eastern Africa region is well-endowed with renewable energy resources that can meet the regional energy needs. However, the region, particularly Ethiopia, Malawi and Mozambique have the largest deficits in access to electricity. In countries facing such significant gaps in energy access, the rapid adoption of technically feasible, economically favorable and environmentally benign renewable energy may help to deliver access to energy sustainably. Even though, the transition from the dominant use of traditional fuels to modern renewable technologies is possible, technology alone will not solve the challenge of energy access. Nowadays, new models of energy delivery are being developed by involving communities in the design and management of off-grid systems. Community energy systems (CESs) can provide additional capacity to existing grids, provide off-grid services where the grid is absent, and bridge on-grid and off-grid systems. 

This study provides overview of the energy access on three East African countries of Ethiopia, Malawi and Mozambique where it is believed that CESs will have important role in fostering the sustainable transition paths. In light of this, the study aims to assess the national energy policy and future directions in integrating CESs in strategic energy planning and sustainable development in the context of Ethiopia. In order to assess these issues, a survey which involved key stakeholders of the energy sector was conducted. The result of the study could be important as input for making policy-adjustments and/or revamping implementation strategies.