WISIONS of Sustainability

Our mission is to empower individuals and communities to transform the production and use of energy so that it effectively enables sustainable development. Read more about WISIONS activities, goals and background.

News Blog

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Outcomes of the 2016 "Africa Biogas and Clean Cooking" Conference

News from WISIONS posted on May 12th, 2016

In April 2016, the coordinator of the RedBioLAC network, which is supported by WISIONS, participated in the Africa Biogas and Clean Cooking Conference. It was organised by Hivos, SNV and the Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity in Ethiopia, in cooperation with the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves.Read moreMinimize

The conference attracted around 140 participants and around 80% were from Africa. While biogas digestion systems for domestic use are widely established across Asia, the African continent still lacks the know-how and expertise regarding these technologies.

Recently, prefabricated fixed-dome biodigesters and different kinds of tubular digesters have been trialled but, to date, only 5% of the implementation potential for biogas plants in Africa has been realised. The main challenges include low initial investment capacities, limited knowledge (especially regarding the potential end uses of biogas and effluents) and poor quality systems.

During the conference, various sessions dealt with the potential and benefits of biogas use for cooking purposes, urban sanitation and communal usage. Further discussions included a market assessment of biodigesters, the question of financial accessibility and possible adaptions to international implementation models.

A more detailed report is available on the RedBioLAC website (in Spanish only).

Rebuilding Infrastructure for Sustainable Energy Access in Nepal

News from WISIONS posted on May 9th, 2016

One of our SEPS projects aims to rebuild infrastructure which was destroyed by an earthquake in central Nepal during April and May 2015. The second working phase of this project, which is being implemented in the Gorkha District of Nepal (the epicentre of the 7.8 M earthquake and one of the highly affected districts), has now been successfully completed.Read moreMinimize

The 2015 earthquake and subsequent aftershocks triggered landslides and other geo-hazards causing massive destruction. This also affected the micro hydro power plants which had been installed by Practical Action in 2013 and 2014. After the earthquake, all these MHPs were destroyed and became non-operational. Consequently, the 14 energy-based enterprises which had been established during the project period were also no longer able to operate.

As communities and entrepreneurs had invested money in the MHPs and enterprises, they faced huge losses. In the first project phase, the main focus was on ensuring community participation and mobilisation of NGO partners, as well as related stakeholders, to better understand the recovery and reconstruction needs of both the communities and the MHPs. In the recently completed second phase, the District Development Committee (the local government organisation responsible for planning and coordinating all development activities in the district) accepted the project as part of its annual development plan. 

Furthermore, a detailed feasibility study of 6 MHPS was carried out to determine their reconstruction needs. Based on this study, an expert team of consultants developed a detailed earthquake-resistant design to ensure that when the MHPs are rebuilt, aftershocks and future earthquakes will not hamper their operation. In the next stage of the project, three selected communities will be helped to contract MHP installers to reconstruct the systems and associated infrastructure.

More general information is available on our project page: RISE - Rebuilding Infrastructure for Sustainable Energy Access.

Wuppertal Institut is a New Member of ARE

News from WISIONS posted on May 2nd, 2016

The Wuppertal Institut, including its initiative WISIONS of Sustainability, is a new member of the Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE). In April, the WISIONS team participated in ARE-RECP’s "Off-Grid Investment Forum" in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where the Alliance also celebrated its 10th anniversary.Read moreMinimize

The Alliance for Rural Electrification is a vital global network of innovative and dedicated professionals who promote and provide technological and financial solutions for rural electrification. As an international business association, ARE represents the decentralised energy sector in working towards the integration of renewables into rural electrification markets in developing and emerging countries. The Sustainable Energy for All initiative (SE4All) is a close business partner.

Since its creation in 2006, ARE has been serving as a global platform for sharing knowledge and best practice to support the rapid implementation of available and advanced renewable energy technologies and services. It currently has more than 100 member organisations.

We are delighted to be a new member of the alliance and look forward to productive collaboration.

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