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Low carbon energy

Meeting the challenge of providing access to sustainable energy sources
Key introductory guides: Low carbon development and Pro-poor electricity

Pro-poor electricity provision

Energy poverty is a major development issue: nearly 1.3 billion people, close to one-fifth of the world’s population, have no access to electricity. We also face the pressing need to decarbonise existing energy systems to address climate change. Therefore, making progress on both objectives requires a sharp increase in renewable electricity production, both on and off-grid. It is within this context that this Key Issues Guide explores the potential poverty impacts of increasing renewable energy capacity in developing countries.

Low carbon development 

The key question at the heart of the low carbon development agenda is: how can countries achieve development – especially rapid poverty reduction and improved human development outcomes – in ways that do not worsen climate change? This key issues guide highlights a range of central issues on low carbon development and presents the complex nature of this agenda including: frameworks for guiding low carbon development; low carbon energy; and low carbon land management, including avoiding deforestation.

Latest Documents

Electricity supply in South Africa: Path dependency or decarbonisation?
G. Montmasson-Clair / Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies, South Africa 2017
Renewable energy technologies have experienced an exponential growth in South Africa, thanks to the procurement of large-scale power plants. However, South Africa’s electricity sector still lacks a level playing field. Significan...
Innovative risk finance solutions – Insights for geothermal power development in Kenya and Ethiopia
Paula Rolffs; J. Richardson; A. Amin / Climate and Development Knowledge Network 2017
Geothermal development is on the rise in many regions of the world. However, the high costs of field development, coupled with the high risks associated with resource exploration and drilling, still pose a significant barrier to ...
Zombie energy: climate benefits of ending subsidies to fossil fuel production
Overseas Development Institute 2017
Ending subsidies to fossil fuel production is often a missing piece of comprehensive climate action plans. To implement the 2015 Paris Agreement and keep climate change well below 2oC, the world needs both supply-side policies...
Report on the nationally determined contributions survey conducted by the Nairobi Framework Partnership in 2016
United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 2017
Countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America and the Caribbean urgently need financial support to green their power sectors and thereby implement their national climate action plans under the Paris Climate Change Agreement. ...
Low Carbon Development Key issues
F. Urban; Johan Nordensvard / Routledge 2013
Low Carbon Development: Key Issues is the first comprehensive textbook to address the interface between international development and climate change in a carbon constrained world. It discusses the key conceptual, empirical and ...
Low Carbon Development Strategies: A primer on framing nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) in Developing Countries
UNEP Risø Centre on Energy, Climate and Sustainable Development 2011
UNEP and UNEP Risø Centre are engaged in providing financial and technical support to a number of countries working on Low Carbon Development Strategies (LCDS) and piloting Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs). Fro...
Financing Pathways for Low Emissions and Climate Resilient Development
Amal-Lee Amin; M. Jaramillo; Chantal Naidoo / Climate and Development Knowledge Network 2014
Shifting the global economy onto a 2°C trajectory implies a rapid shift of existing investment patterns and far reaching transformation in technology, infrastructure and practises, including the adoption of new financing and ...
Utilising Electricity Access for Poverty Reduction - Full report
Practical Action [Intermediate Technology Development Group] 2015
The productive use of electricity can support sustained poverty reduction by enabling the creation and improvement of income generating activities. However, in order to realise these positive impacts, the level of electricity access m...
Financing Universal Access to Electricity
Institute of Development Studies UK 2015
The recent emphasis on the provision of modern energy services as an important ingredient for development has improved finance availability for the goal of Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL). However, existing financial flows ...
Pro-Poor Access to Green Electricity in Kenya
A. Pueyo / Institute of Development Studies UK 2015
Is Kenya on track to follow an electrification strategy that is green and pro-poor? What are the main challenges to following this path? The two questions guiding this study are particularly relevant in a country with exceptional rene...
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