Wind Empowerment

Association for the development of locally-built small wind turbines for sustainable rural electrification


Wind Empowerment is a global association for the development of locally-manufactured small wind turbines (SWTs) for sustainable rural electrification. It aims to strengthen the capacity of its members through collaboration and knowledge exchange to promote and support small wind technology as a viable solution for rural electrification.

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A National Market Assessment For Wind/Solar Hybrid Systems In Nepal

News from WISIONS posted on October 19th, 2018

One of our SEPS exchange activities resulted in a comprehensive market assessment for wind/solar hybrid systems in Nepal, intended to directly address the existing uncertainties surrounding the technology and reach a consensus among stakeholders. Read moreMinimize

Being one of the world’s most mountainous countries, grid extension in Nepal is economically unfeasible in many locations. As a result, off-grid electrification solutions will be required to provide or upgrade access to electricity in the most inaccessible regions of Nepal.

In cooperation with Wind Empowerment, our project partner KAPEG (the Kathmandu Alternative Power and Energy Group) intended to assess the potential of wind/solar hybrid mini-grids for off-grid electrification in Nepal. Their activities resulted in a comprehensive analysis of the existing market for solar/wind hybrid systems in Nepal, including an analysis of the market size, the current regulatory environment, technical issues and the common delivery/business models used to establish and maintain off-grid solar/wind projects in Nepal.

The final assessment includes data collected from six wind/solar hybrid mini-grid sites, with an analysis of failure modes and frequency, along with a summary of a series of expert interviews and techno-economic and mapping efforts. Taken together, these sections are intended to provide actionable information and recommendations for the off-grid small-wind and solar sector in Nepal. The assessment details the current status of small wind in the country, wherein the country is most viable for the technology, what issues need to be addressed to optimize the enabling environment for the technology and what the estimated market size is in Nepal. Through this, our project partners might improve the utilisation of the indigenous wind resource and effectively employ small wind turbines as a solution for off-grid electrification in the rural regions of Nepal in the future.

Find more general information on this SEPS exchange activity here: A Country Level Market Assessment for Small Wind Turbines


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Upcoming Events

The Wind Empowerment 2019-2020 Webinar series will begin soon! Past webinars are available on WE's YouTube channeland on their website.


Introduction

SWTs can offer viable off-grid power solutions where strong wind resources (4–7m/s and higher) are available and evenly distributed throughout the year, or in regions where the combination of small wind technology and solar PV can provide a reliable power supply.

Wind Empowerment was founded in 2011 at the World Social Forum in Dakar, Senegal. The aim was to bridge the geographical gap between its members by providing a global platform for knowledge sharing and collaboration. It has since consolidated and now represents dozens of member organisations, consisting of wind turbine manufacturers, NGOs, universities, social enterprises, cooperatives, training centres, as well as over 1,000 individual members across the world.



Mission & Goals 

Wind Empowerment supports the development of locally-built wind turbines for sustainable rural electrification by strengthening the capacity of its members globally through:

  • Building and sharing financial and human resource connections
  • Performing joint technical research, sharing technical information and collaborating on key vendor relationships
  • Strengthening understanding of business and social models for the effective implementation of small wind technology
  • Managing projects, offering consultancy services and developing/distributing products in line with the association’s guiding principles

Activities

Wind Empowerment acts as both a central knowledge bank and a facilitator of direct connections between its members (currently 39 organisations).

Conference

Wind Empowerment conferences take place every 2 years and are key in building and maintaining the relationships between individuals and organisations that form the basis of the network.

The most recent conference took place in Kayathar and Chennai, India in December 2018. You can find all the outcomes on on Wind Empowerment's Facebook page and on this detailed Review.

The previous conference took place from in November 2016 at two different venues in Patagonia, Argentina: WEPatagonia2016.


Online Platform
The webpage of Wind Empowerment is a rich source of information and serves as an exchange platform for the members, as well as for other people interested in the network and the technology. It covers not only recent news and event information, but also contains a library of resources. In addition, lively dialogue takes place in the discussion forum and the webinars offer background information on relevant current topics.

Working Groups
Six Working Groups (WGs) have been set up to actively address the key barriers facing the development of small wind technology for rural development:

In 2016 all six working groups started to develop so-called kick-starter projects to ensure intensive collaboration within clear targets..

Coordination & Support

Wind Empowerment is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation and is supported by several organisations, one of which is WISIONS.

The coordinator is Jessica Rivas (left).