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Power Sector Reforms and Promotion of Renewable Energy and Efficiency in Ethiopia
paper attempts to look back and assess the extent to which power sector reforms
in Ethiopia have addressed the issue of renewable energy and efficiency. To this
end, the origins of power sector reforms in Ethiopia, the legal and regulatory
framework now governing the power sector, the trends and barriers in the use of
renewable energy technologies, the extent to which power sector reforms have
enhanced efficiency have been looked into. Finally, strategies (regulatory,
technological and financial) for the enhancement of renewable energy use and
efficiency improvement have been indicated.
a renewable energy, features high in Ethiopia’s power sector. Its continued
development is perceived as essential given the extremely low level of current
electricity generation, demand forecasts at hand, and the abundance of
hydropower resources. Although new hydro capacity additions take precedence over
efficiency improvements, Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCO), the
national utility, is undertaking a "demand side management project"
with a view to study demand side management (DSM) opportunities in the
industrial, commercial and residential sectors. System losses are currently as
high as 18%. There is need to reduce the supply system losses to a level below
intervention in demand side efficiency improvement can only come about through
the private sector, by way of market forces. A basic condition that has to be
met in the successful dissemination of efficient technologies is one of ensuring
that the technologies result in financial savings for the user, without any
compromise on the level of service. An example of such an instance in Ethiopia
is the growth in sales of charcoal saving "Laketch" stoves in the
PVs are widely used in telecommunications stations. Their widespread use in
rural Ethiopia would require an approach, which would also address poverty
reduction. Poverty reduction can be effected through the productive use of
modern energy services. The options for the productive use of modern energy
forms in the rural context are, however, not all clear. A thorough study has to
be undertaken to define the available options.
date the extensive use of solar water heaters in Ethiopia is limited. Major
users include high-income households (who can afford the installation costs),
NGOs (who use the heaters in boarding schools, etc.), and hotels. The category
of consumers is believed to increase with the rise in electricity tariffs.
barriers limiting the use of solar water heaters and cogeneration would have to
be studied further. Strategies for enhancing the use of solar water heaters
would have to involve the private sector as a key player. The strategies can
emulate the techniques used in the successful dissemination of the "Laketch"
charcoal stove. Such strategies must address and encompass technological,
economic as well as social dimensions.
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