Assessing the feasibility of solar microgrid social enterprises as an appropriate delivery model for achieving SDG7

Eales, Aran and Strachan, Scott and Frame, Damien and Galloway, Stuart (2019) Assessing the feasibility of solar microgrid social enterprises as an appropriate delivery model for achieving SDG7. In: Energising the Sustainable Development Goals Through Appropriate Technology and Governance, 2019-07-04 - 2019-07-05, de Montford University.

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    Abstract

    Delivering SDG7 by providing secure access to modern electricity for over 1 billion people globally demands innovation in technology, policy and delivery models. Microgrids, defined as energy generation and supply systems with maximum capacity of 100kW having capabilities of managing local energy supply, are proving a viable solution for remote rural areas in the global South with no prospect of main grid connection. While steady technological progress in the microgrid sector is being observed, effective planning methodologies and delivery models are key to sustainable microgrid implementation. Social enterprise is a collective term for a range of organisations that trade for a social purpose, and offer a niche innovative energy access delivery model that is neither public nor private sector. This paper proposes an evidence-based analysis methodology for assessing the feasibility of a social enterprise delivery model for the deployment of solar microgrids in a developing country. Steps of the methodology include conducting a site-specific feasibility study; assessing the market potential; and business scale-up scenario modelling. Conclusions and recommendations are given on the opportunity for this novel technical and business solution to address energy poverty and achieve SGD7.