Energy Solutions for Displacement Settings (ESDS) is one of three project components of the BMZ commissioned Global Programme “Support to UNHCR in the implementation of the Global Compact on Refugees in the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus” (SUN)1, which envisions to work together with UNHCR for self-reliant communities in migration and displacement settings.
UNHCR: "Access to safe and sustainable energy is a basic human need. Without it, the forcibly displaced – particularly women and children – may be at increased risk and have less time to rebuild their lives."
Energy is a vital part of survival, of basic human-dignity and more over it is key to achieving self-reliance. Hence, SUN-ESDS seeks to improve access to safe and sustainable energy in refugee hosting areas through global advisory services and the implementation of technical measures in selected displacement settings in Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda.
SUN-ESDS structures its activities along the following 3 intervention areas:
Improving the policy framework
On a global level, SUN-ESDS partners with UNHCR in support of the Global Plan of Action (GPA), a platform to exchange on best practices for improving the energy supply in displacement settings. The project also provides advisory services to governmental stakeholders in its partner countries in strategic energy planning, with the aim to promote the inclusion of refugees into national service delivery systems.
Greening the UNHCR infrastructure
SUN-ESDS seeks to implement best practices for the replacement of diesel generators that power humanitarian operations, in order to allow for cost and energy savings. SUN-ESDS ensures that relevant assessments are conducted and guides the project development process for solar-hybrid and solar mini-grid systems solutions, thereby promoting more environmentally sustainable and cost-efficient energy solutions. It also develops energy delivery models that are attractive to the private sector, which according to the CRRF should play a more prominent role in displacement settings.
Increasing market-based access to energy for households
SUN-ESDS promotes improved access to energy, energy related services, as well as improved cooking systems for households, social services, and small businesses through market-based approaches, benefitting both refugees and host communities. This involves stimulating demand through awareness product marketing and campaigns. SUN-ESDS develops financing schemes for end customers, such as purchase by instalments, pay-as-you-go, and cash-for-work. In addition, the project promotes the supply of energy through de-risking mechanisms that encourage private sector involvement in the spirit of the CRRF. For example, through the establishment of energy kiosks in displacement settings, mobile charging services are provided, and energy-efficient products are available for purchase. The energy kiosks also function as community centers and are the starting point for awareness raising activities and trainings.
1 About the Global Programme
The BMZ commisioned Global Programme "Support in the Implementation of the UN Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework” (SUN), implemented by GIZ, seeks to support UNHCR in its role as facilitator of the implementation of the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR) and the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) in selected refugee contexts and sectors. The Global Programme is part of the German Special Initiative “Tackling the Root Causes of Displacement, (Re-)integrating Refugees”.
The Global Programme also aims to operationalise the Humanitarian-Development-Peace (HDP) Nexus. The HDP Nexus envisions actors working in humanitarian, development and peace realms to work more cohesively together, capitalizing on their respective comparative advantages following the recommendations of the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit (WHS) and in line with the 2030 Agenda. Under the “New Way of Working” agreed at the WHS, the various actors are expected to work towards “collective outcomes” that reduce risk and vulnerability and serve as instalments towards the achievement of the SDGs.
The Global Programme consists of 3 components that include implementing activities with UNHCR in 7 countries, accompanied by organisational capacity development. The aim is the consolidation, analysis and sharing of lessons learned from implementation experiences in order to better implement the HDP Nexus. This is key in generating knowledge on ‘what works under which conditions’ and contributes to public, organisational and mutual learning between the two partners GIZ and UNHCR. The cooperation can result in better informed and coordinated programming and implementation of the GCR, CRRF and HDP Nexus.
Component 1: Implementation of the HDP Nexus in selected displacement settings (in Niger, Mexico,)
Component 2: Implementation of the HDP Nexus in the sector of sustainable energy (Energy Solutions for Displacement Settings in Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda)
Component 3: Strengthening UNHCR's capacities and governmental structures in Uganda and Rwanda to foster implementation of the GCR and cooperation within the HDP Nexus