Securing enough energy is one of the greatest challenges facing the global community. 74% of the population in sub-Saharan Africa had no access to electricity in 2009. Worldwide, more than 1.5 billion people do not have access to electricity. Improving this access to electricity opens a whole new world of opportunities for participation, education and income generation.
In the least developed countries, a total of 715 million people or 89% of the population depends on wood or charcoal for cooking fuel. Indoor air pollution from cooking and heating causes approximately two million deaths annually, of which 44% are children. The use of firewood for heating and cooking is the main cause of deforestation in many African countries.
In order to have hopes for development and poverty reduction, it is essential to secure people’s access to clean and affordable energy. At the same time, if the world community is to have any hopes of avoiding devastating climate change, this increased energy consumption must be through low-carbon energy sources. Norwegian Church Aid is therefore working to make renewable energy a viable accessible alternative in developing countries.
- Norwegian Church Aid's goal is to ensure access to renewable energy sources and to create sustainable livelihood strategies for poor communities.
We promote rural electrification through the use of renewable energy sources
We mobilise for community-based energy strategies for value addition and livelihood di-versification
We promote sustainable bioenergy alternatives for poor families, a measure that increases energy security and prevents deforestation
We support access to revenues and the participation of indigenous and poor communities in the development of measures to reduce deforestation in developing countries (REDD) and Clean Development Mechanism (CDM)
- We support both global and national advocacy for climate change mitigation and energy policies that are aimed at the poor
- We support advocacy on and monitoring of the development of national measures to combat deforestation in developing countries
Where we work
The following countries are included in the global ‘Climate Change Mitigation’ programme: Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Brazil, Haiti, Afghanistan and Vietnam. In addition both Laos and Mali have important renewable energy programmes.
Selected results 2011
The following are some representative results for the interventions under this global program in 2011:
In Afghanistan two micro-hydro power plants were constructed and are operating with an installed effect of respectively 10 and 18 kW. Equipment for solar electrification of 2110 households was procured but remains unreleased from Pakistani customs due to a conflict between NATO and Pakistani authorities.
In Zambia solar electricity was installed in 200 households and a school in Dikolong’a. This has ignited ideas among community members to introduce adult literacy classes at the school. Six women have been trained as solar engineers and are maintaining the system.
In Mali the solar project was extended to a new village in 2011. In two other villages, systems installed in 2010 were expanded. Two women underwent a three-month training course on solar technology maintenance by other women solar engineers. Another eight women who already received training through Barefoot College have had a second training in Mali for one week.
In Kenya 207 new households engaged in production and use of Jatropha oil, increasing the total number of households to 1,051. Jatropha-based energy now supports community-based value addition for 51 young entrepreneurs in Kipini village. They are engaged in carpentry, computer and tailoring activities.
Carbon financing processes are ongoing in both Vietnam and Kenya. The Project Design Document (PDD) was finalised for Kenya in December. Constraints within the Gold Standard system have led NCA to start developing an alternative approach to carbon financing that is more flexible and affordable.
In Vietnam a total of 245 biogas plants and 87 efficient energy stoves were built in 2011, supporting 1,777 people. The Vietnam biogas project has had very encouraging feedback from communities and it is clear that the project is able to scale up faster than originally planned.
In Haiti four “green” schools have been equipped with biogas installations. A fifth biogas system was rehabilitated in a “model” farm, as a pilot project to educate local farmers.