Updates from December 2019
This month, in collaboration with the ASEAN Centre for Energy, USAID Clean Power Asia held a Technical Review Group meeting in Bangkok for the ASEAN Interconnection Masterplan Study (AIMS) III. The meeting focused on reviewing the methodology, processes, and assumptions for conducting the AIMS III study based on international perspectives and best practices from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute, the International Energy Agency, and the International Renewable Energy Agency.
USAID Clean Power Asia RE planning staff also held a significant meeting with the Lao PDR Ministry of Energy and Mines (MEM) that focused on presenting results of gauging commercial interest in renewable energy zones (REZ) in the country. REZs enable evaluation of transmission needs to access variable renewable energy generation, with MEM noting that accessing these resources will be important for their medium-term power sector planning. The ministry requested inclusion of additional REZ candidates with high RE potential in areas with commercial interest. The ministry expects these additional REZ candidates could potentially supply electricity domestically and/or export electricity to their neighboring countries.
How we improve power sector planning
USAID Clean Power Asia supports integrating climate targets into energy planning to help ensure that both policy and the regulatory environment support low emission growth. In addition to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and deferring or even eliminating the need to build new conventional capacity for energy, scaling up renewable energy (such as solar, wind, small hydro and biomass residues) can deliver significant development benefits. These include providing reliable energy access, improving air quality, reducing health costs, boosting economic growth, mitigating transnational conflict, promoting food security and biodiversity, as well as reducing direct energy costs.
The program supports the establishment and updating of national renewable energy targets and the integration of these targets into power development plans and integrated resource plans for the power sector. USAID Clean Power Asia works to rationalize the planning and development of renewable energy by linking it to the transmission planning process and the program is helping to establish a collaborative stakeholder process for renewable energy zone development in the region.