Strengthening communities and accelerating electrification in Benin
The solar radiation in Benin would be far sufficient to supply the entire rural population of the West African country with energy. However, only one in five has access to electricity. The government wants to provide two-thirds with access to energy by 2025, using off-grid solutions. But there are numerous obstacles. Benin is sparsely populated, and people’s purchasing power is low. Private investments therefore pay off at best in the long term. One financing instrument could be carbon credits. But municipalities and districts do not have the know-how to use these instruments, nor how to promote public-private partnerships (PPP).
The Benin Energy Plus project sees these PPP partnerships as a model for advancing electrification. Therefore, it aims to help municipalities and local governments get bankable projects off the ground, build public-private partnerships, and leverage international funding for carbon reduction. Through a toolkit, it aims to enable the National Association of Municipalities of Benin (ANCB) to structure PPP partnerships for solar PV projects and share this knowledge with its member municipalities.
For this ambitious project, the organization ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability and the National Association of Municipalities of Benin (ANCB) have formed a strategic partnership. At ICLEI, both the World and Africa Secretariats are participating in the project. The organization has been committed to sustainable development for more than 30 years and not only has the necessary knowledge, but can also draw on a large network. The ANCB, which has been in existence since 2003, represents an important link to the 77 municipalities and local authorities in Benin and is thus a key partner for the transfer of knowledge.
The project will be implemented in several steps. First, the project will analyze the prerequisites and potentials for solar PPP partnerships, evaluate potential measures and instruments, and seek dialogue with key stakeholders. In the next step, the project will develop the toolkit by adapting existing PPP models based on the Transformative Actions Program (TAP) and assessing the relevance of carbon credits for potential business models. In the fourth step, the project develops training modules for trainings and knowledge transfer. The project will then present the developed toolkit at regional and international conferences. This will be accompanied by a communication campaign. The project will then make the toolkit available to the public by uploading it to the ICLEI website.