The video showcases some of the results and impacts of the ECOWAS Renewable Energy Facility (EREF) for peri-urban and rural areas. The EREF is an interesting example showcasing the benefits of regional cooperation within the Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centers (GN-SEC).
The Facility undertakes regular call for proposals and provides grant financing to small to medium sized renewable energy and energy efficiency projects and businesses in rural and peri-urban areas. So far the EREF has implemented three calls and is supporting more than fifty rural energy projects.
The Facility is in the second operational phase now which foresees the broadening of its portfolio towards more complex financial instruments and support modalities. Currently, the EREF is being up-scaled through the Regional Off-Grid Electrification Project (ROGEP) funded by the World Bank and its Lighting Africa Program. The project has a volume of around USD 200 million grant and loan financing and will be implemented in partnership with ECREEE and the West African Development Bank (BOAD). ROGEP primarily seeks to promote a harmonized regional market that provides the incentive for the proliferation of stand-alone solar equipment (e.g. solar lanterns, solar home systems, solar water pumps, solar milling equipment, etc.) to homes, business, and communities without access to electrical grid infrastructure.
ROGEP will create a mechanism to access debt financing through BOAD for private sector companies supplying off-grid solar technology solutions. In addition, ECREEE will provide enabling support in the areas of policy, legislation, standards, qualification and certification, knowledge exchange on technology innovations and business models. In line with the EREF model, ECREEE will also operate a facility providing financial and technical support to solar start-ups in the region.
In 2011 the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) created the Facility with technical assistance of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and financial support of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), the Spanish Agency for International Development (AECID) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).