India's NGOs and private entrepreneurs to participate in international drive to develop energy service schemes to fight poverty.The Global Village Energy Partnership (GVEP) announced the establishment of its Action Programs Fund - the GAPfund..
This announcement was made at a meeting in Hyderabad hosted by Ms. Gayathri Ramachandran, director-General of the Environmental Protection Training and Research Institute (EPTRI) and a member of the GVEP Board.GVEP - which is now in its third year and has 700 partners worldwide - was set up as a direct result of the 2002 World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg and works in 26 countries throughout Asia, Africa and Latin America.
GVEP works to provide energy in all its forms, including electricity, which has been identified as one of the most effective tools of combating poverty and improving livelihoods as it provides light, drives industry and improves health care.Dr Abeeku Brew-Hammond, Manager of the GVEP Technical Secretariat, said the GAPfund would make US $1.5 million available for innovative projects that would provide energy services to poor communities around the world, including India. He added that the fund would support projects that deliver benefits in education, health and agro-enterprise, and so help reach the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
GVEP serves as a vehicle for promoting innovative approaches to increasing energy access as a 10-year implementation-based partnership offering a unique mechanism for building upon the global commons of knowledge and experience for mitigating some of the traditional barriers to energy service delivery and socio-economic development. The GVEP approach is based on being technology-neutral, multi-sectoral, multi-application, market-based, and multi-stakeholder.
An example of GVEP's achievements to date is the US$15 million Productive Uses for Renewable Energy (PURE) investment project in Guatemala. The PURE project will provide poor communities and households with higher sources of income and better living standards through improved lighting, water supply, micro-enterprises, etc.
In Brazil, GVEP is linked to the Programma Luz para Todos (Light for All Programme), which is a major productive-use based rural electrification programme seeking to provide energy services to 2.5 million people by 2008. In Senegal a number of Multi-Sectoral Energy Projects (PREMs) have obtained investment financing to the tune of US$ 4.5 million.