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Energy represents a basic and fundamental requirement for economic growth and development. However, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has shown that 1.3 billion people do not have access to electricity, especially in rural areas of Asia and sub-Saharan Africa.

Data reveals that only 5% of sub-Saharan Africa has access to energy: in this region the electricity consumption per capita is one-sixth of the world's average.

In that context, the challenge of energy accessibility needs to be taken into account in terms of availability and affordability for individuals and communities. In this way, renewable energies such as wind, solar or biomass play a key role: over the time, the costs of these sources have significantly reduced.

Recently, some countries have strongly stressed their commitments in distributing renewable energy technologies. To make an example, in Bangladesh every month 80,000 solar home systems will be installed with a positive economic and social impact in the country, benefiting over 20 million people.

Renewable energies represent a great opportunity to strengthen the economic development in the global south. However, progress has been slow.

In the global south, by 2050 countries need an estimated $531bn per year of additional investment in energy distribution, grid and storage systems in order to reduce global temperature rise to 2°C above preindustrial levels, the World Resource Institute say. In relation to that, national and regional policies that foster the energy transition and development of renewables are key instruments to achieve progress.

At the international stage, feed-in tariffs have played an important role to increase the development of renewable electricity, being more efficient measures than other renewable energy policies, in terms of pricing, innovation and job growth.

Moreover, adjusted for a local framework, feed-in tariffs can successfully boost overall energy production, increase economic growth and improve access.  Establishing a reliable background for investments in renewable energy represents one of the main challenging issue for the industry.

Due to the accessibility of domestic finance is often an obstacle to introduce feed-in tariffs in developing countries, the Green Climate Fund of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, can represent an appropriate solution to address the challenges that renewable energy investors face in developing countries.


The gLAWcal Team

(Source: The Guardian)

Friday, 13 June 2014