unctad.org | Overcoming the obstacles to decentralized electricity generation for sustainable development in Least Developed Countries
Overcoming the obstacles to decentralized electricity generation for sustainable development in Least Developed Countries
Book Information
UNCTAD Policy Brief No. 57

Highlight

Decentralized electricity systems based on renewable generation technologies and mini-grids — small, self-contained generation and distribution systems serving local populations — have enormous potential to accelerate progress towards universal access to electricity in least developed countries (LDCs), by helping to overcome the historical obstacles of limited urbanization and low population density in rural areas.

They could also transform rural economies in LCDs, which would make a considerable contribution towards eradicating poverty (Policy Brief 54).

However, realizing this potential means overcoming a number of serious financial, technical, economic and institutional obstacles.

Key points:

  • Decentralized electricity systems can make a major contribution towards increasing access to electricity, transforming rural economies and eradicating poverty.

  • There are, however, major economic, financial, technical and institutional obstacles to realizing this potential.

  • Measures to address these obstacles are therefore a high priority, for both energy policies and development strategies.

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