Friday, 19 June, 2015 - 08:15 to 08:45
A new report by World Bank and several partner agencies brings out new approaches for defining and measuring energy access. Access to energy is a key enabler of socioeconomic development. Energy is needed for multifarious applications across households, community facilities and productive engagements. However, to be meaningful, access to energy must be adequate in quantity, available when needed and of good quality. In addition, it should be affordable, reliable, convenient, legal, healthy and safe. Energy access may be secured through a range of technologies including grid and off-grid electricity, as well as the use of conventional fuels and renewable energy. Energy access needs to be not only delivered for 1.1 billion people who do not have a household grid electricity connection, but it also needs to be meaningfully secured for those who are grid-connected but do not get adequate supply at homes, community facilities and in their productive engagements. This new report suggests a paradigm shift from a binary definition of energy access in terms of household electricity connections to a multi-tier approach that assesses energy access from the perspective of usability of energy supply for various desired applications. This first report enunciates a conceptual framework for multi-tier measurement of energy access. Subsequent reports would suggest methodological approaches and draw out analysis from global roll-out of the multitier metrics across projects, programs and countries.