17 October Oct 2014 1739 17 October 2014

Energy for all, the EU initiative

95 % of the people without access to modern energy services are either in sub-Saharan Africa or developing Asia, and 84% of them live in rural areas. Yet 1.3 billion people lack electricity to light their houses or conduct business. Twice that number, nearly 40% of the world’s population, rely on wood, coal, charcoal, or animal waste to cook their food.

These numbers explain the importance of universal energy access, an issue that a United Nation global initiative, SE4ALL, is trying to address. SE4ALL focused on achieving three objectives: universal energy access, increasing renewable energy sources and improving energy efficiency.
On October 1st, SE4ALL forum organized a meeting to address one of the three objectives: access to energy for all. AVSI Foundation attended the event, during the panel "Action and Actors: Catalyst and Advocacy Support from SE4ALL". Giampaolo Silvestri, secretary general of AVSI, gave a speech about the role of civil society organizations in the path of achieving these energy objectives.

Giampaolo Silvestri's speech started from AVSI field experience in the energy sector, that means several projects about renewable energy and energy access in Africa, energy efficiency in collaboration with the private sector in Brazil, social impact mitigation in Brazil and Peru, and distribution of energy-efficient cooking stoves in Maputo, Mozambique.

AVSI Foundation also took part in a workshop organized by DEVCO, on October 29th. The workshop aims to examinate new financial opportunities to support Rural Electrification, in order to provide access to modern sustainable energy services. During the workshop, hosted by the European Commission in Brussels a variety of stakeholders had the opportunity to discuss new possibilities for providing financial support to Rural Electrification projects through a joint effort by the private sector and civil society organisations, and to share experiences and to identify common practices. One of the objectives was to identify successful business models for accelerated roll-out of energy access in rural communities.

AVSI chaired a panel in which the draft EU Electrification Financing Initiative ( ElectriFI ) was presented. The program aims to improve access to energy in rural areas of developing countries, through the promotion of private sector activities.

Watch Giampaolo Silvestri's intervention (from minute 31):