Modern Energy Cooking Services (MECS)

Modern Energy Cooking Services (MECS) is a research and innovation programme funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) that seeks to accelerate the uptake of clean and modern cooking practices in Africa, South Asia, and the Indo Pacific. It develops research on modern energy cooking services (including on socio-economic and technical innovations in the sector), it funds pilots to scale-up new clean cooking technologies and business models in developing countries, it conducts policy research to inform and influence countries and key stakeholders to adopt principles around MECS in their own strategies and planning, and it funds World Bank-led global tracking tools around modern energy cooking. MECS leads the ‘Modern Cooking’ Ayrton Challenge.

Low Energy Inclusive Appliances (LEIA)

Low-Energy Inclusive Appliances (LEIA) is a research and innovation programme focused on improving the efficiency, performance, and availability of electrical appliances and solar powered technologies suited to off-grid and weak-grid settings, while lowering their cost for consumers including in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and the Indo-Pacific. This includes appliances that deliver critical energy services such as refrigeration, cooling and communications (e.g., fridges, fans, TVs, solar water pumps) and technological innovations in areas such as advanced refrigeration, agricultural processing, electric cooking, brushless DC electric motors, interoperability, compatibility, and connectivity. LEIA leads the ‘Energy Efficiency’ Ayrton Challenge and co-leads the ‘Sustainable Cooling For All’ Ayrton Challenge, along with supporting on the ‘Modern Cooking’ Ayrton Challenge. The programme is funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) via the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) platform.

Enabling African Cities for Transformative Energy Access (ENACT)

ENACT is part of the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) platform and is creating an enabling environment for implementation of market-led energy access solutions for people in urban informal settlements in sub-Saharan Africa through public-private partnerships. It is doing this through:
– Public sector capacity building in urban energy data collection and planning;
– Designing, piloting and testing energy access implementation models led by the private sector; and
– Knowledge dissemination for scale-up and replication in urban areas across sub-Saharan Africa.

Clean Energy Access for Remote Pacific Island Countries – CLEARPICs

In Countries and Territories (PICTs) in the indo-Pacific access to electricity has increased from 31% of households on average in 2010 to 55% in 2018. Three of the largest and most populous PICTs, however, have the poorest electrification rates (by household) – Papua New Guinea (PNG) (47%), Solomon Islands (57%), and Vanuatu (64%). A mixed energy approach that continues to support the increasing demand for access to energy with the inclusion of some of the most remote and rural communities across the Pacific is critical towards achieving SDG7 and a shift away from fossil fuels to meet the countries Nationally Determined Contributions. Universal access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy services is articulated in SDG 7, hence supporting remote and island-based communities to access energy and catalysing business opportunities will be transformative.

Existing hurdles and risks are high for private companies doing mini-grid projects in the PICTs. The remote nature of the islands and harsh marine environment poses challenges of accessibility and lack of economies of scale. Such unfavourable conditions result in a high cost and risk which prevents private companies from engaging. As a result, there has been a vacuum of responsibility for the sustainable operation of mini-grid projects, which in turn results in unsatisfactory performance and unfulfilled socio-economic benefits of mini-grid projects.

This new project is to support energy access across PICTs through research into technology applicability, scale and governance within case study countries by undertaking geographically specific research into opportunities for off-grid energy deployment within PICTs countries. The project includes five work packages with some delivered across all PICTs whereas others will be undertaken on a selection. The three PICTs that have the poorest electrification rates (PNG, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu) will be covered by specific tailored activities along with other PICTs that have made more energy access progress to help further progress pioneer markets and act as a reference case, such as Fiji.

Accelerate to Demonstrate (A2D) Facility

The Accelerate-to-Demonstrate (A2D) facility is part of the wider Clean Energy Innovation Facility (CEIF) funded by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) , and also aims to accelerate the commercialisation of innovative clean energy technologies in developing countries with a focus on critical minerals, clean hydrogen and cross-cutting themes such smart energy and industrial decarbonisation.

The International Energy Storage Challenge

The International Energy Storage Challenge, led by the Faraday Institution, accelerates the delivery of disruptive battery technologies to provide reliable and sustainable energy in developing and emerging economies with on-grid, significant off-grid, and weak grid populations. This is delivered through a research and development programme to reduce the cost and improve the performance of battery energy storage systems (BESS) technologies for use in developing country contexts. This Challenge is led by the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) platform

Clean Energy Innovation Facility (CEIF)

Clean Energy Innovation Facility (CEIF) is a programme funded by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) that aims to accelerate the commercialisation of innovative clean energy technologies in developing countries in key themes. The existing CEIF 1.0 programme under the platform focuses on industrial decarbonisation, sustainable cooling, smart energy, and energy storage.

Climate Compatible Growth

Climate Compatible Growth (CCG) is a research platform funded by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) which is helping countries in the Global South to take a path of low carbon development while simultaneously unlocking profitable investment in green infrastructure. The platform is also helping to open up new markets and supporting delivery of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). CCG develops evidence and global public goods to help countries develop and implement economic strategies, plans, and policies to attract investment into low-carbon growth opportunities across multiple sectors. Much of its work is currently focused on grid-scale energy and clean transport. CCG builds partnerships in key countries (including Zambia, Kenya, India, Lao, Vietnam and Ghana), supporting them with a consortium of world-class UK and international researchers to build the evidence, tools and decision support frameworks needed to leverage a shift to clean investments.

Market Mechanisms for the Communities Living in Extreme Poverty

Market Mechanisms for Communities Living in Extreme Poverty (MM-EP) is a research project that aims to fill an information gap by understanding who and where those who live extreme poverty (living on less than $2.15 per day) are, and what their energy needs and challenges are. The project will review market-based mechanisms (e.g. PAYGo/hire purchase business models) that currently operate in the energy access sector and understand which mechanisms best serve communities living in extreme poverty. The overarching objective is to provide high quality research to support future decision making. MM-EP is led by Practical Action and supported by the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) platform.

Transforming Humanitarian Energy Access (THEA)

The Transforming Humanitarian Energy Access (THEA) programme aims to ensure that no one is left behind in displacement settings in the transition to sustainable energy solutions. THEA is led by the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and is supported by the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) platform. It seeks to support inclusive and transformative investments in sustainable energy throughout the humanitarian sector and to mainstream investments in humanitarian contexts through collaborations with TEA partners. Furthermore, THEA aims to enable the UN system and humanitarian partners to deliver sustainable energy access in displacement settings using more inclusive practices.