Examples of GIZ’s work: Energy for sustainable development

27.08.2015 – Energy drives development, whether as electricity for cooling, by powering machines or as fuel for transporting goods or people.

Worldwide about 2.7 billion people cook and heat using simple wood or charcoal ovens and stoves. Meanwhile, 1.3 billion people have no access to electricity. This has far-reaching consequences for the environment and for health, education and income. Sustainable development cannot succeed without access to modern energy technologies.

Therefore the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and the Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs joined forces to form the Energising Development (EnDev) energy partnership. Australia, Great Britain, Norway and Switzerland have also come on board. EnDev aims to provide 15 million people with access to sustainable and efficient energy technologies and services by 2019.

BMZ has commissioned the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH to carry out this work. Currently EnDev is working in 24 countries around the world, primarily in those that are least developed. ‘Our work focuses on different levels and is adapted to the conditions of each country,’ says Carsten Hellpap, who is responsible for EnDev at GIZ.

For example, the project supports technical solutions such as solar systems, hydropower, energy-saving stoves and biogas. Sustainability and efficiency always play a key role. What’s more, these solutions help avoid the time-consuming practice of collecting firewood, and respiratory illnesses have greatly declined as the energy-saving stoves produce less smoke. Productivity has also greatly improved through the use of electric-powered machines such as irrigation pumps in the fields, household sewing machines and grain mills. And the storage of medicine and sterilisation instruments in cooled containers at health stations has led to improvements in health care.

In the past 10 years, EnDev has helped provide about 14 million people in private households with access to electricity and improved cooking energy. In addition, 16,000 public facilities such as schools and health centres and 30,500 small and medium-sized enterprises are now connected to a power supply or other energy services. Moreover, EnDev has trained more than 32,000 stove producers, craftspeople and traders. And all with economic success, as Hellpap confirms: ‘Today they make a monthly turnover of EUR 5.8 million with their products’.