Energising Development (EnDev) is an energy access partnership currently financed by four countries: the Netherlands, Germany, Norway, and Switzerland. EnDev promotes sustainable access to modern energy services that meet the needs of the poor - long-lasting, affordable, and appreciated by users.
The new programme in Nepal is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GlZ) on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) since 2008 to facilitate access to modern energy services through the grid and off-grid technologies. GIZ implemented EnDev supports the Community Rural Electrification Programme (CREP) of the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), associated with the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation for grid extension to communities. For off-grid technologies, EnDev supports Micro Hydro Debt Fund (MHDF), administered by the Alternative Energy Promotion Center (AEPC). In addition, Improved Water Mills Electrification (IWME) and Pico hydro systems is implemented by SNV to support rural-remote villages with electricity.
Lastly, a results-based financing (RBF) facility on clean cooking technologies is implemented by Practical Action Nepal and SNV under the implementation infrastructure of the EnDev core activities.
About 90 percent of Nepal's total population has access to electricity, with progressive work/developments in the electricity sector in recent years has resulted in the increase of the electrification rate and no power cuts. However, there are still areas (Karnali and Sudur Paschim province particularly) where the rate of electrification is the lowest in the country. Also, the energy per capita of Nepal is low and most of the rural communities use electricity mainly for lighting only. The government has set out an ambitious goal to provide electricity to every household within 2023 and increase electricity consumption to 700 units per person within four years. However, there is a significant urban-rural disparity, with about 94 percent of city dwellers benefiting from a connection compared to just 61 per cent of the rural population.
Although Nepal as a country has recently taken great strides in the electricity sector but in terms of the cooking sector progress has been slow or stagnant. With no major fossil fuel reserves, people in rural areas still rely heavily on traditional sources of biomass energy. Firewood has a large share in cooking energy, stressing out the already dwindling country’s forest resources. The health impacts from indoor air pollution relating to inefficient cooking technologies exacerbate the problems further in the rural context.
The shortfalls in the energy supply curtail opportunities for education, quality health care, and access to information as well as the potential for income generation.
For more information see energypedia.
EnDev Nepal follows three main approaches to provide electricity and clean cooking technology to rural communities. The country project supports the National Rural Electrification Programme implemented by the national utility Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) for grid extension. EnDev signed a grant agreement with NEA to partially finance grid extension to Community Rural Electrification Entities (CREE) through loans to communities. The repayment of these loans from the communities to the National Association of Community Electricity Users Nepal (NACEUN) (previously NEA managed) turns into a revolving fund for CREEs. EnDev provides organizational, technical, and financial support to the CREEs that manage electricity distribution within the community, and provides all necessary training to employees to operate as an independent village utility. In total, 60 CREEs have been supported within the scheme. The repayment of these funds from the communities to NACEUN shall turn into a revolving fund for further support to CREEs in the future. Despite its success, CREEs have also observed that still many households are not connected to the lines mainly due to the high initial connection investment costs. Thus, the present grid densification programme deals with this issue by providing an incentive to those CREEs that can enable marginalized/disaster-affected/ poor households with effective access to the grid while at the same time promoting productive uses of electricity in their operation areas.
The second component supports the efforts of remote communities to gain access to electricity from micro-hydropower plants via a dedicated debt fund: The Micro Hydro Debt Fund (MHDF). This enables the communities to repay the high upfront costs over a long period of time and encourages commercial banks to finance micro-hydro projects in rural Nepal. The MHDF is aligned with the new multi-donor funded National Rural and Renewable Energy Programme for the energy sector in Nepal. 30 micro hydropower plants which received funding from the MHDF are already in operation. In addition, Improved Water Mills Electrification is implemented by SNV on behalf of EnDev to upgrade improved water mills to generate 3-5 kW electricity for mini grids. 40 watermills are completed so far.
The third project component is a results-based financing facility on improved cookstoves, implemented by Practical Action Nepal & SNV led by EnDev.
EnDev Nepal supports and promotes equitable access to energy which is beneficial to all members of the rural communities. The Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (GESI) and productive use of energy interventions are implemented to engage dynamic socio-economic growth in EnDev Nepal Project areas as well as ensure the sustainability of the local utilities. This is conducted in cooperation with the National Association of Community Electricity Users Nepal and the Micro-Hydro Users Committee. Enterprise development and employment generation are promoted through the training of personnel with business affinity in various entrepreneurial skills.
Some of EnDev's Contributions in Nepal's Energy Sector
Electric Cooking Pilot Project in Teemal, Kavre for promotion and assessment of the potential of electric cooking in the rural communities. Ajummery Bikash Foundation & NACEUN implemented this project which is funded by EnDev, a total of 569 households adopted electric cooking (induction cooktops).