Contribution to the Establishment of the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Capability for the Hindu Kush Himalaya, REEECH
The Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Capability for the Hindu Kush Himalaya, REEECH, an initiative of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) aims at improved access to appropriate, modern, affordable and reliable energy services to meet the energy security needs of mountain populations in the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH) region, as well as enhanced safeguarding of essential mountain ecosystem services.
To accomplish its objective the REEECH initiative aims at delivering the following outputs:
1. Policy Implementation: Development of harmonized policy, regulatory, and institutional framework, which is gender responsive and socially inclusive, and conducive to accelerated uptake of renewable energy and energy efficient technologies and practices in the HKH region
2. Capacity Development: Building the capacities of market enablers, major players both governmental and non-governmental, and all other stakeholders will be focused to develop and implement renewable energy and energy efficiency investment projects/ programs in the HKH region.
3. Knowledge Management and Awareness: Generating and sharing mountain specific data, research and knowledge product on good (and poor) practices to support design, implementation and tracking/benchmarking progress of renewable energy and energy efficiency investment projects/ programs through strengthened regional cooperation
4. Investment Entrepreneurship and Innovation: Facilitate the design, development, and deployment of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies and build business models for the operation and maintenance and replication in member states.
The main target beneficiaries of approximatley 35.000 persons of the activities of REEECH shall consist primarily of renewable energy and energy efficiency market players and enablers in the HKH region:
1. Policy makers in energy and related sectors (e.g. ministries, municipal governments)
2. National institutions in charge of promoting sustainable energy and rural energy
3. Educational and training institutions (e.g. universities, training centres)
4. Energy manufacturing and service industry (e.g. consulting, suppliers, equipment producers, installers, IPPs)
5. National utilities and regulators
6. Civil society (e.g. sustainable energy advocacy groups, women groups) - Ultimately, the greater population, local industry and public institutions will benefit from increased access to modern, affordable and reliable energy services.
Finally, a total population of 240 million located in Nepal and Bhutan and the mountainous parts of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, India, Myanmar, and Pakistan will benefit from REEECH activities through increased access to reliable, affordable and modern energy services.
REEECH will act locally and internationally as a regional hub and think-tank for mountain sustainable energy transformation particularly focusing on up-scaling and replication of national efforts in the areas of policy implementation, capacity development, knowledge management and awareness raising, as well as investment and business promotion. REEECH will be an important advocate for SDG-7, SDG-9 and SDG-13 in national, regional and international policy and decision-making processes. REEECH will develop and execute its activities through a network of National Focal Institutions and Regional Thematic Hubs by including all eight regional member countries of ICIMOD.
And REEECH will work towards an equilibrium between market demand for and supply of sustainable energy and climate products and services. REEECH will put particular emphasis on actions directed to increase the domestic value creation of investments in sustainable energy and climate products and services. In this context, REEECH will focus on sub-regional actions to strengthen the productive (agriculture, processing of food and high-value products, manufacturing, assembling, servicing) and innovation capacities of domestic businesses and entrepreneurs (e.g. fiscal and non-fiscal incentives, incubation, acceleration, R&D, quality infrastructure and standards, qualification, IPs, cluster building).
REEECH's interventions are fully in line with the priorities of the Medium-Term Action Plan 2018-2022 (MTAP IV) of ICIMOD. The MTAP-IV recognizes the importance of renewable energy solutions as an important nexus-component across all regional programmes and, more importantly, includes it as one of the initiatives under the Regional Programme on Adaptation and Resilient Buildings. The REEECH initiative will be hosted within the “Adaptation and Resilience Building” regional programme of ICIMOD.
The institutional set-up of REEECH initiative reflects the principles of maximizing the impact, avoiding duplication of efforts, strengthening and up-scaling of already existing local capacities. It will demonstrate local ownership and work according to the local rules under the umbrella of ICIMOD’s decision-making process and policy framework.
The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) is a regional intergovernmental learning and knowledge sharing centre serving its eight regional member countries. ICIMOD’s target area is the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region, which covers all of Nepal and Bhutan as well as parts of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, India, Myanmar and Pakistan. ICIMOD responds to the specific needs of low-income groups in mountainous areas with the goal of sustainable mountain development. The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is promoting inclusive and sustainable industrial development in developing countries with a particular focus on resource efficiency and cleaner production, as well as sustainable energy services.
Access to renewable energy and energy efficiency solutions and technologies are a key for building climate resilient livelihood solutions in the mountain areas of the HKH region. Yet, despite its vast potential of hydropower and other renewables, the HKH region remains energy poor and vulnerable. A broad range of barriers including policy and regulatory obstacles, out-dated technology, and a lack of capacity and of finance, have prevented the region from taking full advantage of existing and potential renewable energy sources for decentralized sustainable energy solutions in off-grid mountain areas.
The creation of REEECH responds to the urgent need for enhanced south-south cooperation and regional capacities to promote sustainable energy investments, markets and industries in the mountain areas of the HKH region.