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renewable energy

Policies need to catch up with tech

|12 April 2017|

Renewable energy adoption needs to happen much faster if agreed sustainable energy goals are to be met, according to new analysis.

Over a billion people still don’t have access to electricity and with technology doing its part, governments, business and key stakeholders need to accelerate the roll out of innovative solutions to every corner of the planet where power is needed.

Securing sustainable energy for all by 2030 is one of the Sustainable Development Goals the international community has signed up to. But on the current trajectory it will take until 2080 before every African has access to electricity, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) claims.

Incorporating decentralised renewable energy (DRE) targets into national policy is one answer to speeding things up, a new report argues.

“Decentralized Renewables: From Promise to Progress” was published by Power for All, a global campaign to provide universal energy. This roadmap for Clean, Rapid Rural Electricity Access, is pressing stakeholders to act now. And it sets out the steps legislatures must take to achieve it.

“In many countries, policy bias favouring grid-centric, fossil fuel approaches is holding back access in rural areas where the vast majority of the energy impoverished reside,” the report says.

Earlier this month sustainable energy leaders met in New York at the Sustainable Energy for All Forum. The latest edition of the ‘Global Tracking Framework: Progress Towards Sustainable Energy’ was launched and it reveals the rate of progress is worrying.

“We will miss the target of universal access by 2030,” if changes aren’t made, Rachel Kyte, Chief Executive Officer of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) said. But she pointed to the progress which has happened quickly as prove of what is possible.

“Fifty-six million more Indonesians are now cooking with cleaner fuel instead of high-polluting kerosene. Ninety percent of the population in war-torn Afghanistan now has electricity – much of it solar – up from 50% only four years ago. And while 11% of Afghanistan’s rural population is getting power from the grid, 58% are getting it from off-grid solar,” she wrote.

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