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Programmes

Programmes

Current programmes

Piloting biogas in Benin towards national scaling

In Benin, burning firewood for cooking has stark environmental, livelihood and health impacts. However, biogas presents a sustainable alternative and the Swedish Postcode Foundation awarded Energy 4 Impact a grant in November 2020 to pilot the roll-out of biodigesters on farms across northern Benin. It aims to demonstrate a viable market for biodigesters and the resulting compost. An initial selection of 120 farmers will be supported to acquire biodigesters or organic compost, as well as given technical guidance, business mentoring and linkages to financial institutions. A proposal for scaling biodigester uptake will assist the Benin government with expanding the National Biogas Program.

Water and Energy for Food (WE4F)

This collaboration between German development agency GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) and Energy 4 Impact consists of three programmes designed to promote the uptake of innovative solar irrigation technologies and business models across Benin, Senegal and Tanzania. Making farmers aware of the advantages of solar-powered irrigation is at the heart of this initiative, but a holistic approach is needed to ensure long-term efficacy, so support to farmers will also encompass advice on agronomy, productive uses of solar energy in post-harvest processing and routes to market. The overall aim of the initiative to improve livelihoods, food security and resilience amongst smallholder farmers living in poor and marginalised communities.

ENACT – Energy access for the urban poor in Freetown and Kampala

The Enabling African Cities for Transformative Energy Access (ENACT) programme works with local governments, the private sector, and local communities to create an enabling environment that helps to improve energy security for the urban poor living in informal settlements and slums in Freetown and Kampala. The project aims to introduce market led energy solutions to provide adequate, safe, reliable, clean and affordable forms of energy to urban poor communities. The project is funded by UK aid from the UK government, managed by The Carbon Trust, and delivered by ICLEI Africa with support from Energy 4 Impact.

The Powering Renewable Energy Opportunities (PREO)

Funded by IKEA Foundation and UK Aid and delivered by Carbon Trust and Energy 4 Impact, PREO aims to promote renewable energy in sub-Saharan Africa to boost long-term job creation and reduce poverty. It supports collaborative projects and partnerships that use a market-led approach to stimulating productive use of energy (PUE) in off-grid areas and, in doing so, it aims to create more than 3500 sustainable jobs and empower more than 1000 women through their engagement in productive energy use activities and associated value chains. In addition, PREO also aims to create a globally significant centre of PUE expertise in the sector, by developing a platform to support, direct and communicate market and project learning, which will be key to achieving wider impact.

Kenya’s Energy and Cash Plus pilot project

This 20 month pilot is testing new approaches for linking cash transfer beneficiaries in two of the most deprived areas in Kenya with off-grid energy solutions. Designed to integrate into the country’s social protection programme, the Energy and Cash Plus pilot project supports the government’s ambition to achieve universal energy access by 2020 for the most vulnerable segment of the population. Funded and managed by UNICEF, Energy 4 Impact is working with the Busara Centre for Behaviour Economics and Somali Aid to support the implementation of the programme.

Foyre Rewbe2 (Women and Energy)

This ENERGIA-funded programme aims to scale-up access to productive uses of energy for women enterprises in Senegal. Following the success of the previous Women’s Economic Empowerment and Advocacy programmes, it includes interventions designed to: (1) increase the number of women entrepreneurs equipped with skills, knowledge and resources to use energy to enhance productivity; (2) create an enabling policy and market environments through enhanced awareness and involvement of the public and private sector; (3) build evidence and knowledge by testing pioneering innovations; and (4) strengthen synergies with actors operating in the same space.

The Rockefeller project

The Rockefeller project seeks to address energy poverty in Africa by catalysing the growth of a viable mini-grid sector. In an effort to stimulate electricity demand and increase affordability, Energy 4 Impact is piloting a tariff-by down facility to enable consumers to afford and utilise more power; and a working capital facility for mini-grid developers to finance the purchase of energy efficient appliances to be sold on credit to their consumers (households and commercial). This work hopes to produce an evidence base that supports the case for more systematic support for mini-grids and the low income customers and businesses they serve on the key business model drivers: tariff and consumption.

Scaling-up WIRE (Nishati na Wanawake)

This programme seeks to build on the success of the multi-year Women in Renewable Energy (WIRE) programme and expand its reach to six additional energy-poor rural counties in Kenya and Tanzania. With improved cookstoves at its heart, the expansion, funded by The Adventure Project, will help more women-led enterprises to further develop the market for clean cooking, while also minimising carbon dioxide emissions and creating more jobs.

Solar irrigation in Rwanda (SIR)

This US$1 million programme has been funded by the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) to develop the small scale solar irrigation market in Rwanda. The project targets an estimated 3,000 smallholder farmers, organized into farmer groups and cooperatives, through the introduction of specialist financing facilities and other market development activities, such as product and technology awareness. The programme aims to support 13,000 farmers over five years with access to solar irrigation systems, resulting in improved productivity and increased income benefiting their family members representing 65,000 people.

Green 4 Access First Loss Facility (G4A)

G4A is a partnership between GreenMax Capital Group and Energy 4 Impact which seeks to increase access to renewable, sustainable energy in Africa by offering the risk mitigation provided by first loss cushions for lending to the off-grid sector. Through this modern and inclusive approach to green energy finance, G4A will engage with major development finance institutions and impact investors to support activities such as dependable education, reliable hours for small business owners and customers, regular internet access and more.

Green Mini-Grid Market Development Programme

We have teamed up with INENSUS, a green mini-grid developer, to deliver an 18-month programme on green mini-grid market development. Financed by the African Development Bank, the programme is supporting developers on issues ranging from business planning, market development and grid design to project finance, grid operation and maintenance. The main objectives are to accelerate the development cycle of Green Mini-Grid projects and to improve their bankability, create links between market actors in order to address gaps and developer capacities, technology, financing, and contribute to the evidence base of commercially viable projects.

Ideas 2 Impact

Energy 4 Impact is part of a consortium that is implementing a five-year programme to support innovation in the development sector. The programme will offer a number of prizes to stimulate innovative problem solving around key challenges in energy access, water and sanitation and climate adaptation. Energy 4 Impact is the energy access theme lead on the project team. The programme is funded by UK Department for International Development (DFID).

Moving Energy Initiative

We are leading a consortium on a ground-breaking project that is testing new approaches to providing energy access and management in humanitarian interventions. Following phase I, focussed on research and evidence-building, phase II will be testing new ways of developing sustainable energy solutions camps in Kenya and Burkina Faso and in non-camp setting in Jordan. With funding from the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the programme aims to support the widespread adoption of new practices, whether in terms of camp management, service provision, business models and private sector engagement or partnerships with local authorities.

De-Risking PAYGO in Uganda Refugee Settlements

Energy 4 Impact is supporting GPTech to implement this USAID Power Africa’s 18-month project which aims to accelerate off-grid investment and energy access by incentivising private sector PAYGO solar home system companies to serve customers in Kiryandongo and Rwamwanja refugee settlements and host communities. By providing grants that will cover costs associated with their expansion into these locations, the project will encourage private companies to view the refugee settlements and host communities as viable markets. The lessons gained through this project will provide a catalyst for future private sector-led energy access interventions.

Transforming Energy Access (TEA)

As a member of a consortium led by Carbon Trust and including TERI and ERC Cape Town, Energy 4 Impact is implementing the 4 year DFID-funded TEA programme with the objective to improve coordination across a series of programmes incubating solutions to energy access, as well as identifying and funding additional activity in collaborative partnerships and skills development. Energy 4 Impact’s role is to draw the link between innovation in research and academic, businesses and projects in Africa.

Powering Opportunities Partnership – action-research projects in sub-Saharan Africa

The Powering Opportunities Partnership is a component of DFID’s wider Transforming Energy Access Programme. It aims to demonstrate how the off-grid energy sector can stimulate local jobs and create economic value in the region. Energy 4 Impact in partnership with the Carbon Trust are managing two related challenges providing grant support to a) action research projects that can create and drive productive electricity demand in off-grid and rural areas; and b) demonstration projects related to local value addition and employment creation in production and assembly of off-grid energy products.

CROWD POWER 2 (CP2)

This programme follows on from the successful three-year pilot programme, Crowd Power, and will provide co-funding to early-stage and growth-phase companies raising seed capital on donation, reward and equity crowdfunding platforms. CP2 will support the growth of debt platforms by assisting with the costs of establishing guarantee and local currency facilities. The programme will also have a strong research component and conduct a feasibility study on the role of equity crowdfunding in financing energy access companies. UK aid has committed £1 million to the programme.

Strengthening rural livelihoods in Senegal

Energy 4 Impact is supporting FAO’s Rural Women Livelihoods Enhancement for Sustainable Economic Development Project in the Tambacounda region of Senegal by strengthening the business capacity of producers, especially women entrepreneurs in the banana value chain, and improving access to funding to boost agricultural productivity and market access. This project forms part of the Missing Middle Initiative, launched by the Global Program for Agriculture and Food Security to support smallholder farmer organisations.

Developing productive uses of energy in Senegal

Energy 4 Impact is piloting projects to demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of solar refrigeration in remote, off-grid systems and isolated networks in Senegal. Over the next 18 months, Energy 4 Impact will support 30 local women-owned businesses to invest in solar refrigeration systems, and monitor their performance in order to be able to scale up this activity in the future. This project is funded by GIZ under its PED (Programme Energies Durables) programme.

Energise Africa

This programme is an additional component of Crowd Power, driven by the desire to engage the UK public in this space. The investment platform was provides an opportunity for the crowd to finance solar home systems purchased on credit, by African households, and earns investors interest, while supporting energy access and poverty alleviation. The objective is to build a self-sustaining partnership between platforms and solar businesses in Africa.

Deliver for Good Senegal

Deliver for Good is a global campaign advocating for gender equality and investments in women and girls to achieve sustainable development for all across 12 development priorities. Energy 4 Impact and Senegalese NGO Siggil Jigeen have joined forces to drive the campaign in Senegal on issues from education at all levels for women and girls, to health and access to resources including energy, water and sanitation.

Project Jua

Funded by the Ovo Foundation, this project aims to install solar PV systems in private schools and clinics in some of the least developed counties of Northern and Coastal Kenya, with a pilot project in Turkana and Kilifi.

Renewable Energy 4 Refugees (RE4R)

In partnership with Practical Action we are working in Kigeme, Nyabiheke and Gihembe refugee camps in Rwanda to improve energy access for both refugees and host communities. Practical Action is spearheading the provision of solar-powered electricity for households, small enterprises, institutions, community facilities and street lighting. Energy 4 Impact is leading on the development of livelihood opportunities arising from increased energy access in refugee camps and host communities. Started in April 2017 the programme will run for 3.5 years.

Past programmes

Rural Electrification Densification Programme (REDP) in Tanzania

In partnership with the Rural Energy Agency’s grid densification programme, Energy 4 Impact is providing business development support to local business owners following their first-time connection to the main power grid. The aim of the programme is to stimulate economic development and increase local commercial uptake of electricity through enterprise development support and financing facilities to micro-enterprises wishing to buy electrics tools and appliances. The programme is funded by the Norwegian Government with Multiconsult acting as REA’s Technical Assistance Consultant.

Community-Based Energy Education Programme

Energy 4 Impact and the Tanzania Council for Social Development are testing a community-based energy education programme to increase the uptake of electricity in areas that have recently been electrified by the Government of Tanzania through the Rural Energy Agency (REA). This project is designed to improve the performance of rural electrification projects in areas characterised by low levels of connections and consumption, due to lack of information on requirements, procedures, benefits, costs and usage of electricity to power businesses, education and health infrastructure. Funded by the World Bank, the programme will benefit REA and other utilities involved in rural electrification projects.

Energy Business for Development (EBD)

This $3.23 million programme provided advisory services and capacity building support for energy sector micro, small and medium enterprises, developing productive use activities of newly electrified villages, clean cooking and women’s economic empowerment in Kenya, Tanzania, Senegal, and Uganda. EBD was the second phase of the Energy SMEs Programme, financed by the ESME Trust Fund, which was administered by the World Bank. Informed by the experience and lessons learned under the first phase, the EBD programme supported energy sector businesses and project developers to grow the energy markets in sub-Saharan Africa.

WIRE

The Women in Renewable Energy (WIRE) multi-year programme aimed to support women energy entrepreneurs in rural Kenya and Tanzania by offering them business and technology training, and help to access financing and market opportunities. With funding from the US Department of State and The Adventure Project we supported women entrepreneurs that produce, manufacture, import, distribute, promote, supply or retail improved cookstoves, briquettes, biogas and solar products, such as lanterns and solar home systems. By September 2018, WIRE had provided 1 million people with access to clean cooking and solar lighting products.

Solar Milling Field Deployment and Research

This 9 month pilot aims to test different business models for rural off-grid solar milling in sub-Saharan Africa using Agsol milling technologies. Funded by UK Aid and managed by CLASP under the Efficiency for Access Coalition, it follows on from a previous market scoping study that mapped out different small to medium scale off-grid solar milling models in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. We are working with rural off-grid mill operators in East Africa to understand the market potential and to share insights with providers of off-grid energy and other off-grid productive use appliance distributors who are considering expanding their services to include solar milling.

Productive and Empowered Women Entrepreneurs in Kigoma

This 12 month project provides women, involved in agricultural processing in Kigoma, one of the most impoverished areas of Tanzania, with technology training to boost their productivity and profitability. It aims to ramp up incomes, create jobs and food security, and build sustainable markets by forging strategic partnerships between women entrepreneurs and equipment suppliers, banks, distributors and consumers. Delivered by Energy 4 Impact and funded by UN Women, the project is part of the Kigoma Joint Programme, a UN initiative that aims to improve development and human security in the region.

Productive and Empowered Women Entrepreneurs in Rural Senegal

Supported by the Swedish Postcode Foundation grant, the Productive and Empowered Women Entrepreneurs in Rural Senegal programme supported 55 women groups and cooperatives, representing over 2,600 women, engaged in farming, dairy production, agro-transformation, shop keeping and weaving in the Tambacounda, Kolda and Thiès regions to improve their productivity, livelihood and income thanks to investments in sustainable energies. By strengthening women businesses skills through finance, marketing, agronomy and technology mentoring, and facilitating investment in productive appliances, the initiative helped women entrepreneurs increase the productivity, resilience, efficiency and viability of their businesses.

Integrating gender issues in energy policies in Senegal

Energy 4 Impact delivered an advocacy and communication programme to influence gender mainstreaming in energy policies and programmes in Senegal. With funding and support from ENERGIA, we advocated for the integration of clear gender objectives and actions within the SE4ALL national action plan and investment prospectus. We also raised awareness of issues related to women’s economic empowerment within the global campaign on Energy, Women, Children & Health.

CARE2

Capital Access for Renewable Energy Enterprises (CARE2) was a four-year, $10.4 million programme targeting the creation of 4,400 new jobs in 1,200 micro, small and medium energy-focussed enterprises, and addressing multiple barriers to growth in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and Rwanda. Funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), CARE2 had three components: an Enterprise Support Team which provides business, financing and technology advice to SMEs; a Capital Access programme that provides access to finance; four country projects, targeting defined niches and designed to stimulate the creation and growth of energy businesses in cookstoves, mobile phone charging, briquettes and other markets.

Energy Opportunities for Women in Senegal

Forming part of the ENERGIA’s three-year Women’s Economic Empowerment initiative, funded by the governments of Finland, Norway and Sweden, this programme aimed to improve livelihoods and income in rural areas of Senegal, by supporting 160 women entrepreneurs engaged in both expanding energy access and productive uses.

Power Africa Programme

This programme, in collaboration with NREL and contracted by the US Agency for International Development under the Power Africa’s Beyond the Grid initiative, aimed to provide support to mini-grid developers and public stakeholders operating across sub-Saharan Africa. Energy 4 Impact was selected to be NREL’s partner because of its strong mini-grid project experience and existing developer relationships.

Scaling up Off-Grid Energy in Rwanda (SOGER)

SOGER aims to grow sustainable off-grid renewable energy markets by supporting private sector companies to deliver energy access to an estimated 77,000 people in poor rural areas, and create 7,000 jobs. The Sida funded programme is designed to respond to the country’s challenges and the government priorities with regards to poverty reduction and energy access in rural areas. It involves a facility to support small isolated mini-grid projects, including small and pico hydro projects, providing electricity to rural communities. It also focusses on increasing productivity for small farmers through access to appropriate solar powered irrigation systems.

PUE on DEVERGY micro grids in rural Tanzania

With funding from the Mott Foundation, we are implemented a project seeking to address the complexity of designing and implementing strategies for developing micro-enterprises that use energy produced by small solar energy micro-grid companies operating in Tanzania.

Crowd Power

A three-year programme to stimulate, develop and learn from crowdfunding of renewable energy enterprises in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. Funded by DFID, the programme provided direct financial support to crowdfunding campaigns trialling approaches such as match-funding, guarantees (insurance) and/or gift vouchers. Energy 4 Impact produced in-depth research and analysis.

Jumeme

A mini-grid demonstration project aimed to connect nearly a thousand households and 350 businesses. The project, implemented in partnership with private energy businesses INENSUS, Terra Projects and St. Augustine University of Tanzania, saw Energy 4 Impact play a key role in developing productive use demand. The project was funded under the Energy and Environment Partnership Programme of Southern and East Africa (EEP S&EA) by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland (lead donor), UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the Austrian Development Agency (ADA).

Developing Energy Enterprises Project (DEEP)

A five-year small and micro-enterprise development programme in East Africa, funded by the EU and the Netherlands governments. By supporting 950 entrepreneurs engaged in solar PV products and services, clean cookstoves, briquettes and biogas, more than four million people were provided with improved access to energy products and services, and jobs were created for 4,400 people. The total funding for this was €4 million, demonstrating significant impact per dollar of donor support.

Energy SME Programme (ESME)

A five-country programme funded by the Russian government through the World Bank. We supported businesses involved in productive use applications for energy, small hydro project development, clean cookstoves and solar product distribution in East and West Africa, through various forms of grant funding and advisory services on technical, financial and operational issues.

Indigo solar lighting: PAYG with Azuri Technologies

Through this USAID-funded $1million programme we supported both Azuri and its in-country distributors to deploy 10,000 solar home systems in Rwanda in a sustainable and self-financing way. The aim for the project was to provide a template for future deployment of pay-as-you-go (PAYG) solar systems in other countries.

Spark Fund

This initiative aimed to improve the performance and quality of locally manufactured efficient cookstoves in Kenya. To acheve that, Energy 4 Impact worked with high-potential cookstove businesses to improve their technical, product design and manufacturing capacity and practices. A seed fund was also established to provide capital for these companies to expand their activities.

IDEAS2

The Energy Innovation Contest Ideas2, focused on innovative projects and ideas promoting renewable energy, energy efficiency and access to energy in the Caribbean. The winning ideas included a biogas system using waste from hotels and farms in Jamaica; an affordable solar power and micro-financing model bringing energy to remote communities in Suriname; and a gasifier, which drives a 20kW turbine supplying electricity for a micro-grid in Haiti.

Nyundo Project

With an OFID grant worth about $500,000, this project aimed at increasing sustainable electricity output in Rwanda by constructing an on-grid plant capable of injecting 3MW to the national grid.

TASF

The Transaction Advisory Services Facility was part of IFC’s Tanzanian Mini-grid Programme, managed in partnership with the Government of Tanzania, which was funded through the Scaling Renewable Energy Programme (SREP). In collaboration with Tanzanian and international partners, Energy 4 Impact assisted private mini-grid developers in designing, developing, implementing and scaling of individual green mini-grid projects in the country.

SEED Fund project

Energy 4 Impact has provided business advisory and investment-readiness services to enterprises in Kenya and Tanzania that were selected as winners by the SEED initiative.

Kenya Climate Innovation Center

A business incubation services to climate technology start-ups providing proof of concept grants and help for companies to access investment capital, business advice, access to information, workshops, laboratories and office facilities. Benefiting from a $4.5 million World Bank grant of operational funding for four years (2012-2016), as well as $4.9 million of investment capital channelled through the Kenya Climate Venture Facility, the KCIC supported 135 enterprises in the energy access, water and sanitation and agricultural sector in Kenya. Energy 4 Impact, Strathmore University, KIRDI and PWC are the four consortium partners that helped set up KCIC. Danida provided grant financing to extend its operations to 2020.