ECREEE Participates in a Multidisciplinary Dialogue on ‘Renewable Energy Technologies for Productive Uses in West Africa’

The International Centre for Science and High Technology (ICS) of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (ICS-UNIDO) organized a workshop on ‘Renewable Energy Technologies for Productive Uses in West Africa’, in Trieste, Italy, from 17–19 April 2012. The workshop sought to facilitate the sharing of scientific knowledge and technological know-how on the use of renewable energy technologies for productive uses aimed at enhancing productive activities and increasing competitiveness of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in rural on/off-grid areas in West Africa.

The workshop was held against the background that although electrification through renewable energy has had significant social impact in rural households of developing countries, it is the productive use of this energy that brings about an increase in income levels and development benefits to rural households.

Thus, the multidisciplinary dialogue, set up by the ICS-UNIDO, was aimed at developing action plans for steering the use of renewable energies towards improving economic output in the areas of agriculture, food production, processing and storage, textiles and clothing, as well as in commercial services, community and social services.

The dialogue produced the following action plans:

  • Through training and capacity building programmes, increase the knowledge and skills of individuals and institutions in developing countries, to enable them to engage more effectively in the renewable energy sector.
  • Initiate research projects in collaboration with individuals and institutions to propose innovative solutions, and to improve the implementation of international best practices in RE projects.
  • Facilitate knowledge and experience sharing with academia, policy makers, practitioners and other stakeholders.
  • Develop effective channels of communication between experts, government officials, senior policy makers, academia and other stakeholders
  • Strategic Networking and Partnerships: link ICS and UNIDO activities with partner institutions, such as ECREEE, in both industrialized and developing countries.

Mr. Hyacinth Elayo, Energy Policy Analyst at ECREEE, gave a presentation on ‘ECREEE’s Initiatives on Renewable Energy in the ECOWAS Region’, which highlighted some of ECREEE’s initiatives aimed at facilitating the widespread usage of RE&EE technologies across the ECOWAS region. These include the development of tailored policy, legal and regulatory frameworks and quality standards; capacity development and training; advocacy, awareness raising, knowledge management and networking, and business and investment promotion.