Importance of Data Collection

As some of you know, REN21 specialises in collecting data on the current state of renewables. We do this as you can’t make good decisions without knowing the “who”, “what “and “how” of the current situation. Reliable information helps investors, decision makers and project developers define possible opportunities for renewable energy uptake. Sound data informs policy design and adaption efforts and allows decision makers to assess progress towards (or regression from) energy access objectives. Businesses and developers need to know the potential of a country or region before any money will flow: thus good information is crucial to stimulating economic development.

This year, in addition to its annual Renewables Global Status Report, REN21 is working with the ECREEE to prepare a regional status report on renewable energy and energy efficiency in the ECOWAS region.

This fifteen country region is one one of the most active regions in Africa for the promotion of renewables and energy efficiency. Moreover renewables provide a real opportunity for the region to achieve a globally important position in the renewable energy market. The importance of renewables in meeting energy needs was recently reinforced by the adoption of the ECOWAS Renewable Energy Policy (EREP) and ECOWAS Energy Efficiency Policy (EEEP). Together these two policies support the ECOWAS member countries in developing their National Renewable Energy Action Plans (NREAP) which are due by the end of 2014.

REN21 is currently collecting data for the ECOWAS regional report. If you would like to contribute to this process please email us: gsr@ren21.net. The better the information we have, the better able the region will be able to make good decisions about its low-carbon, clean energy future.

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