Closing the Data Collection Gap

I am just back from the the Second High-Level Meeting (HLM) of the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP) which took place last week in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The theme was “Taking the Next Step: Africa and the EU are tackling energy challenges together”. I had hoped to send an entry while there but there were too many interesting people to talk to and the time just slipped away.

REN21 was there to participate but also to host a couple of side-events, one of which was on the challenges of closing the data gap. Despite being held just prior to the High-Level Meeting the event was well-attended and the lively discussion illustrated just how important/difficult/frustrating the issue of data collection is. The participants were from NGOs, research institutes, government and business with the result that the session was not one of finger pointing (as to who was at fault for not leading the data collection “brigade”) but rather an energetic discussion about how to close the data gap. We grappled with what we mean when we say “data” and who should engage in the process. Two key points came out of the discussion. Continue reading “Closing the Data Collection Gap”

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. Continue reading “Importance of Data Collection”

Linked Open Data for Sustainability & Climate Change Development – discuss with us!

Last week,  the Open Knowledge Conference (OKCon), from 16-18 Sept in Geneva, set out to answer three key questions in the global (Linked) Open Data (LOD) effort:

Energy Hackathon Helsinki – short review

I have spend most of last week in Finland’s lovely capital, Helsinki.

My main reason to visit was to attend and present our work at the Energy Hackathon. This event was staged at the Aalto University’s Media Lab and drew together a pretty wide range of interesting people. Backgrounds included developers, energy companies, journalists and students.

Chris Davies, Julia Kloiber, the local energy company and myself  kept our presentations short to leave enough time for some hands-on activity. The day concluded with 8 energy-relevant concepts being developed and showcased. I was part of a jury of three, and the selected winners of the day were: lightbulb.gif Continue reading “Energy Hackathon Helsinki – short review”

RETScreen introduction video

REEEP has been an longtime supporter of RETScreen – and recently they have released this interesting video where OpenEI interviews Greg Leng, RETScreen‘s creator. We wanted to share it here and tell our readers a bit more about this useful tool.

RETScreen is a free, simple-to-use decision support tool to help decision makers and energy professionals evaluate the financial viability of renewable energy, energy efficiency and cogeneration projects around the world.

The program helps answer questions such as: “Shall I install this wind farm, what’s the cost, what’s the  financial return, what’s the risk”  The kind of decisions that have to be answered reliably, fast and best of all –  free of charge. Factors such as also energy efficiency and due diligence are also part of the package. Continue reading “RETScreen introduction video”

World Bank collection of development visualizations

Have you seen the World Bank Viz page on tumblr already? It’s a cool selection of all the visualizations World Bank has collected to make sense of available open data.

The aim is to fight poverty by understanding the reasons and facts on one hand, and on the other to promote transparency and end corruption.

What you can currently find on the page includes: small_recycle.gif Continue reading “World Bank collection of development visualizations”

New visualization about national action on climate change

The global climate-action-map is a cool application making use of publicly available datasets to visualize which countries are actively engaged in the fight against climate change. It has been released by the Climate Institute.

All major emitting countries are implementing policies to reduce emissions, drive clean energy investment and improve energy efficiency. This is driven by a range of factors including the need to reduce local and global air pollution, avoid environmental degradation, improve energy security and build new industries and employment opportunities. This map provides a summary of high-level national actions on climate change and a good point to start researching the facts. Continue reading “New visualization about national action on climate change”