The launch of the capacity building partnership in Nigeria kicked off with its inaugural session. It provided a comprehensive overview of the evolution, trends, opportunities, and challenges within the country's decentralized renewable energy sector.
At this year summit 22 speakers from 14 countries presented a unique overview of policies and markets, technological innovations, certification concepts and new standards.
In general terms the presentations and discussions highlighted the fact that recent policy shifts in many countries do not really support the small wind turbine industry. Supportive mechanisms such as net metering, feed-in-tariffs and other instruments to promote investment and the adoption of the technology have either been reduced or even totally abandoned in many countries. However on the positive side, the presentations also demonstrated that the sector is highly creative and innovative: some of the strategies that the industry is exploring in order to maintain or broaden the global market for small wind turbines include improved and cheaper designs, better integration with electronic components, new business models and integration with solar technologies.
In this context WISIONS shared experiences gathered during the last 3 years through its Regional Partnership ‘WindWorks’, which is coordinated by GreenEmpowerment. The main lessons highlighted by WISIONS were:
- Small Wind has competitive advantages vis-í -vis solar power only in a narrow niche in most Latin-American countries.
- Small Wind offers advantages as an off-grid solution where there is a very strong wind resource and relatively low solar radiation during certain times of the year.
- Secure long-term access to both technical support (i.e. know-how, skills and spare parts) and sufficient finances to fund this support are crucial for the sustainability of small wind off-grid solutions.
- Many stakeholders in the region are interested in small wind for rural development and other niches.
- Cooperation between WindWorks and the WindEmpowerment Network is anticipated in the future.
Click here to access the WISIONS presentation.