A renewable energy-centred research agenda for planning and financing Nexus development objectives in rural sub-Saharan Africa

Falchetta, G. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2607-2195, Adeleke, A., Awais, M. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6853-758X, Byers, E. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0349-5742, Copinschi, P., Duby, S., Hughes, A., Ireland, G., et al. (2022). A renewable energy-centred research agenda for planning and financing Nexus development objectives in rural sub-Saharan Africa. Energy Strategy Reviews 43 e100922. 10.1016/j.esr.2022.100922.

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Project: Long-Term Joint EU-AU Research and Innovation Partnership on Renewable Energy (LEAP-RE, H2020 963530)


In rural sub-Saharan Africa – the global poverty hotspot – the vast majority of cropland is rainfed only, resulting in reduced and unstable yields. Smallholder farmers account for 80% of agricultural production but they have limited access to relevant services to support both commercial operations and their livelihoods: more than two-thirds of rural dwellers have no access to electricity (crucial for crop irrigation, processing, and storage) and about 40% have no access to clean water. Previous research has analysed integrated technological and resource management approaches to tackle these overlapping development gaps. To finance and implement such transformations in resource-constrained settings, it is now crucial to understand the business and investment implications, also considering the strong regional population growth and the increasing frequency and intensity of climate extremes. Here, we lay out a research agenda that promotes the integration of multi-scale modelling excellence along the climate-water-renewable energy-agriculture-development Nexus and the creation of robust business models for private companies that can sustainably support private smallholder farmers of SSAin their effort to eradicate poverty and inequality. The proposed agenda is a cornerstone of the EC-H2020 project LEAP-RE RE4AFAGRI (“Renewable Energy for African Agriculture: Integrating Modelling Excellence and Robust Business Models”). In proposing the agenda, we highlight the importance of integrating energy access into the Nexus framework from both research and investment perspectives.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Energy access; Private investment; Renewable energy; Rural development; Sustainable business models; Water-energy-food-economy Nexus
Research Programs: Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Integrated Assessment and Climate Change (IACC)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Sustainable Service Systems (S3)
Energy, Climate, and Environment (ECE) > Transformative Institutional and Social Solutions (TISS)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 29 Aug 2022 08:33
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2022 08:33
URI: https://pure.iiasa.ac.at/18179

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