Georgian energy cooperatives featured in new Friedrich Ebert Stiftung study
Georgian energy cooperatives and Director of WECF-Georgia, Anna Samwel, were featured in a new study entitled "Energy Transition in South East and Eastern Europe, South Caucasus and Central Asia" by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Foundation last December in 2018.
January 25, 2019
This article describes the transition countries within the post-Soviet realm have begun to take into renewable energy sources.
While focusing on the individual energy sectors to date within each of the included regions, it also discusses the difficulties that each one faces when up against the "status quo" of the sector. A few of these barriers include a remaining heavy dependency on imported fossil fuels, the inheritance of energy supply infrastructure from the Soviet times, and continuing fossil fuel and nuclear energy subsidies.
Along with these setbacks, the role of regional collaboration remains an area of improvement for these countries. Despite several initiatives and organizations working on regional energy cooperation to develop renewable energy development, the overall progress of the member countries requires more urgency.
The article also provides an overview of the various renewable technologies that member countries have focused on and developed as of now, in comparison with non-renewables.
Source: Komila Nabiyeva's compilation, based on IEA statistics, 2016.
Although renewable energy development and the regulatory policies surrounding it remain on the slow track, the work WECF is doing in Georgia is mentioned as a success and best practice in the region that could be replicated in other member countries.
WECF is highlighted for its work to introduce solar-water heaters to replace wood stoves and a heavy reliance on firewood as a primary energy source. Small training sessions to teach people how to build their own solar water heaters turned into the establishment of four energy cooperatives from the support of local community members and several Georgian NGOs. The cooperatives now specialize in consulting, production, installation, service and maintenance of solar water heaters.
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