Good Practices and Lessons

Mitigation: Energy Efficiency


 Tunisia: Development of an Energy Efficiency Program for the Industrial Sector - Successful leveraging effect of the GEF support

This project’s main objective is to overcome barriers to the development of a sustainable market for energy efficiency products. In addition to the removal of institutional and capacity-related barriers, the project aims to establish energy services companies (ESCOs) as the main vehicle to guarantee a sustainable energy efficiency market.

To date the project has facilitated the development of sustainable energy efficiency (EE) market for Tunisian industry and an average of 60 projects approved annually. Gross investment in energy efficiency in Tunisian industry has increased to about US$16 million since January 2005. Energy savings have achieved 39,744 tons of oil equivalents (toe - unit of energy: the amount of energy released by burning one tonne of crude oil - approximately 42 GJ) per year and 62 subprojects have been approved to be subsidized through this program. In addition, six ESCOs have been established and are now fully operational, and the number of companies having ESCO-mediated projects has increased to seven, with four other contracts underway.  Finally, technical centers for construction materials and technical canter for mechanical and electric industries have been monitoring the energy efficiency contracts signed for the subprojects.


Overall, the project has exceeded many of its targets.  In terms of investments in energy efficiency, the project has resulted in more than US$150 million of energy-efficient investment, compared to an original target of US$25 million.  With respect to the CO2 emission reduction target, approximately 130,000 tonnes of CO2 per annum are being reduced via the investments already made. The level of lending to ESCOs and industry by commercial banks as compared to all energy efficiency investment under the projects has reached 8.7 percent, exceeding the project target of 5 percent. Finally, the energy efficiency project has approved 232 energy efficiency program contracts, which reflects a relatively healthy and growing energy service industry.

Regional: Program on Electrical Energy Efficiency in Industrial and Commercial Service Sectors in Central America (PEER) - Successful capacity building in GEF projects

This program is designed to remove the barriers that inhibit the implementation of energy efficiency (EE) measures in order to promote a market transformation for the efficient use of electricity in the industrial and commercial service sectors in Central America, focused on motors, air conditioning, and refrigeration. Implementation of the program has commenced in four core countries: El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, and Costa Rica, while Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras are the associated countries in which information dissemination and replication activities will also take place.

The establishment of commercially viable markets in energy efficiency is supposed to assist commerce and industry in becoming more competitive in the global context, by reducing operating costs in the short run and decelerating demand for increased thermal power capacityin the long run. In addition GEF involvement is envisioned to enable an environment where private sector business development and investment activities are making informed decisions through implementation of three main components: (i) creating a legal and regulatory base for market transformation; (ii) securing institutional and individual capacity to implement EE and support SMEs; and (iii) distilling lessons learned and information dissemination.

To date, the program has illustrated that trough the PEER projects the energy efficiency markets have been triggered for the first time in Central America, through elaboration on energy efficiency standards and labels, an experience that can be shared with other regions and countries, such as the Caribbean countries. In addition, this project contributes to technology transfer in many ways. For example, PEER has made a significant effort for promoting equipment imports mainly for CFLs given the availability of an energy efficiency label. Additionally, the program has illustrated that the elaboration of energy efficiency technical manuals and several case studies helps to promote the transfer of more efficient technologies in the Region. PEER also identified gender-related barriers such as lack of information on the application of best practices in energy saving, limited technical understanding on efficient technologies, and  lack of culture regarding the efficient use of energy among women. To remove these barriers, PEER looks to strengthening technical knowledge of the stakeholders through technical handouts distributed to all targeting energy users.

Armenia: District Heating Project - Successful replication of the GEF projects

This project’s objective is to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions resulting from the current heat and hot water supply practices in Armenian cities by laying the foundation for the sustainable development of heat and hot water supply services in these cities while taking into account global environmental impacts. Within this framework, the project works on: (i) strengthening the role of condominiums in collectively organizing and managing heat and hot water supply services at the building level; (ii) supporting the restructuring and capacity building of the existing district companies to improve both their service quality and operational efficiency; (iii) supporting the new decentralized service providers to commercially run, market, and diversify their businesses, in order to promote the use of alternative environmentally clean and energy-efficient technologies and to structure financing for the required investments in areas that do not sustain the centralized district heating services; and, (iv) using the results, experiences, and lessons learned for advancing the sustainable development of the heat and hot water services in Armenia with a specific emphasis on the GHG emission reduction aspects.


The project’s successful implementation has promoted development of legislation on preferential combined heat and power (CHP) feed-in tariffs and, therefore, greater private sector interest in investing in commercially viable power and heat supply projects. This demonstrates that there are promises for future investments in heat supply. Still, a number of other legislative barriers exist, such as VAT levels on natural gas for district heating, which if successfully addressed will further ensure that investment finance is available. Considering financial resources for municipalities or for support services for condominium owners associations, in the absence of appropriate legislation (which may be provided by the heat law), financial sustainability does not exist, and replication throughout the country will be limited. 


Renewable Energy

Croatia: Renewable Energy Resources (RER) - Stimulating on-grid markets for renewable energy

The Croatia Renewable Energy Resources project has as its objective to help develop an economically and environmentally sustainable market for renewable energy resources in Croatia. Development of this market should support Croatia in its EU accession efforts. In addition, the project decreases Croatia economy’s reliance on imported electricity and fossil fuels, reduces overall emissions, leads to a higher degree of local equipment manufacturing, creates an attractive climate for private investment in renewable energy, and generates local industry and employment. The project deals with both the production of electricity and heat from RER. However, most of the emphasis is put on electricity production (from wind farms and biomass-fired cogeneration plants).

The project’s first component focuses on the drafting and adoption of legislation and regulation to create a feed-in tariff whereby independent renewable energy generators are paid a favorable tariff for electricity sold to the grid.  The other components focus on increased biomass and increased wind-generation; these, however,  have made less progress to date due to the regulatory framework.  Nonetheless, now that the regulation hurdle is passed, they are expected to experience rapid growth to meet the project’s renewable generation targets.

Overall, the project focuses on stimulating on-grid renewable energy investments by creating the proper regulatory and enabling environment and demonstrates that without the proper regulatory framework, no progress can be made in taking renewable energy to a significant scale. Even with the regulations are in place, scaling up the renewable generation is not always easy. 

Uganda: Energy for Rural Transformation - Stimulating off-grid markets for renewable energy

This project, the first long-term programmatic proposal submitted under the WB/GEF Strategic Partnership for Renewable Energy, serves as a platform for demonstration and testing of several programmatic modalities and operational procedures envisioned under this Partnership.  It aims to remove market barriers to support the development of approximately 70 MW of biomass, hydro, and solar renewable energy capacity over 10 years in a commercial, private sector orientation, and is implemented under an Adaptable Program Loan approach utilizing three funding tranches. Funding releases are guided by performance indicators for each tranche. Such an approach stimulates accelerated development of rural energy sources strongly interlinked with rural development needs and objectives, and provides a significant shift away from diesel power sources. 

At its current stage, most of the project activities are nearing completion and nearly 597,000 WP of solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity has been installed in household and institutional PV systems. The only ones that may not be completed by project closure being the construction of the Nyagak mini-hydropower plant, the grid extension components,and PV systems for the education institutions. The Nyagak mini -hydropower station is delayed mainly because of the inability of the civil works subcontractor to execute the works.

The project demonstrates that it is possible to grow the market for off-grid PV’s to provide modern energy to those without access.  It also showed the willingness and ability of local consumers to pay, as well as the ability of the industry to expand into this niche.  Unfortunately, the PV industry remains a boom-bust industry, with prices  driven primarily by periodic shortages in production capacity and rapid growth in the subsidy-driven rooftop market in Europe and North America.  Once these complications are resolved, PV systems will become far more important as sources for clean energy for those in remote rural areas of developing countries.


Peru: Photovoltaic (PV) Based Rural Electrification - Successful capacity building

This project’s objective was to assist the government of Peru in removing barrier to sustainable rural electrification using PV technology in remote rural areas, thereby reducing the long-term growth of the GHG emissions. The project demonstrates the viability of establishing micro enterprises to sell, maintain, and operate the PV system, as well as create incentive for increased public and private sector investment in PV-based rural electrification. 

When commenced, the project was entirely new in focus (renewable energy in rural areas), magnitude, and scope and therefore no references existed. As such, basic elaboration of renewable energy data, standards, identification of study areas, elaboration of Household PV Systems (HPS) administration models, capacity building of users and local technicians, and installation of a large number of HPS were required. Despite the fact that the project had a strong technical focus, the project’s evaluation found that  establishment of an administration model was one of the project’s key contributions, as it provides an example for future initiatives in Peru.


Philippines: Marikina Bicycle Network - Sustainable Innovative Systems for Urban Transport

Marikina Bicycle Network project’s main objective is to improve the operational efficiency and safety of the transport system of Metro Manila, with better opportunities to use public transport and nonmotorized transport (NMT), the dominant transport modes of low-income residents. The Global Environment Objective of the project is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by promoting the use of zero-emission bicycle and pedestrian transport. A second objective is to demonstrate and publicize the benefits and viability of bicycles as an alternate transport mode to encourage replication of this pilot program in other parts of Metro Manila, elsewhere in the Philippines, and in other countries. 

The indicators for the completed projects show that the development objectives of the project are being met by the remaining components under implementation. So far, there are nine civil work contracts under the revised scope of the project. Out of the nine contracts, five have been completed, and four  are ongoing. Overall, the project has attracted GEF financing of US$1million toward successful development of bike paths. The bike paths component exceeded its target of 7.56 percent of modal share of trips by NMT in 2005, up from an original measure of 4.25 percent.  The project also resulted in an increase in public awareness for expanded NMT and has spawned additional similar investments throughout Marikina City.  Although there is an acknowledgement that the measurement of the GHG benefits might be difficult, the project has contributed to increased sustainable mobility in the Philippines.