Category Archives: Climate & Energy

Mainstreaming gender in energy projects: training

Partners for Innovation and MDF offer a free of charge train-the-trainer course for organizations in ECOWAS countries involved in gender mainstreaming in energy projects. This three day course will be held in Accra, early 2018.  We are looking for NGOs or training institutes that have experience with gender and energy-related capacity building. The course, travel and accommodation will be paid for by UNIDO-ECREEE.

Find more details on the training here: ECOWAS Training announcement – incorporating gender-sensitivity in energy practices.

For more information on the project, please contact Stan van den Broek.

 

Boost for agribusiness – FinAgri Niger 2017

On 16 and 17 May 2017 Partners for Innovation Niger organized in Niamey the FinAgri. Financial institutions and key actors of the agricultural sector in Niger took part in a finance fair related to the agri sector.

Participants of the fair were agri-businesses, farmer organizations, banks, micro finance institutions, government organizations, NGOs and donor organizations.

Partners for Innovation organized the FinAgri through AgriProFocus as Partners for Innovation is responsible for running the  AgriProFocus network in Niger.

Find detailed information (in French) in the  Journal AgriProFocus spécial 2017

 

Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program

Control Union Certifications and Partners for Innovation work together, since 2013, to verify if European biofuel companies comply with the requirements of the Renewable Fuel Standard program.

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program is a US program aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide robust and achievable growth of the biofuels industry. The program is part of the US Energy Policy Act of 2005 and expanded under the US Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

The demand for  biofuels  has rapidly increased over the years. Regulations on fossil fuels have become stricter and companies take on opportunities for sustainable alternatives.  European biofuel companies typically produce renewable fuel from waste such as used cooking oil, animal fat and waste oils of vegetable oil refineries. Some also produce renewable fuel from commercially available vegetable oils.

Companies that produce biofuel need 3-yearly updates of engineering reviews to be able to export their biofuels to the US.  Control Union’s inspection and certification services are globally recognised.

  • Contact

Peter Vissers p.vissers@partnersforinnovation.com

Thomas Dietz t.dietz@partnersforinnovation.com

Loek Verwijst (Control Union Certifications) 

  • More information

Bioenergy

CUC website 

US EPA RFS website

Partners for Innovation member of the Climate Technology Centre & Network

Partners for Innovation has become a member of the Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN). The network brings together stakeholders engaged in a wide range of activities related to climate technologies.

Climate technology centre and network

The main goal of the network is to promote technologies for low carbon and climate resilient development at the request of developing countries. It provides “technology solutions, capacity building and advice on policy, legal and regulatory frameworks tailored to the needs of individual countries.”

The network can support your climate mitigation and adaptation ambitions and activities, by funding technical support. For questions how to get this support, please contact Emiel Hanekamp. 

Contact

Successful 4th edition of the Week of Agricultural Entrepreneurship

AgriProFocus Niger organized the 4th edition of the Week of Agricultural Entrepreneurship (SEMEA) in Niamey, Niger in November 2016. Over 8,000 participants from different regions of the country and abroad came together for meaningful exchanges, innovation and building business partnerships.

 

The African economy is largely dependent on the rural sector (agriculture, livestock, fisheries and forestry) with an estimated contribution to GDP at 43.2% in 2010. The rural sector occupies 85% of the active population and provides 37% of export earnings (INS, 2014).

However, crises affect agricultural production systems. Vegetable crops, many of which are self-consumed, are characterized by low yields.

The SEMEA is aimed at agricultural development, economic and social development and poverty reduction in Niger. Participants came from farmers’ organizations, government members, NGOs, banks, microfinance institutions, research institutions, youth organizations, retailers and the private sector.

AgriProFocus first organized the Week of Agricultural Entrepreneurship in Niger in 2012. The 2016 edition was organized in collaboration with the YAWWA project of SNV to promote farms, but also entrepreneurs and agribusiness operators. The SEMEA aimed to put youth at the heart of agricultural entrepreneurship.

AgriProFocus is an international multi-stakeholder network in the agri-food sector consisting of farmer entrepreneurs, private sector enterprises, governments, knowledge institutions and civil society organisations. By bringing these stakeholders together, their individual and collective impact increases. AgriProFocus is active in 13 countries in Africa and South-East Asia, and links 22,000 agribusiness professionals worldwide.

In Niger, Partners for Innovation hosts the AgriProFocus network and provides its coordination staff.

Contact

Rakia Gazibou  gazibo5@hotmail.com

Website Agriprofocus en Agriprofocus Niger

Website SNV

Renewable energy in Africa – 12 years of experience

Two pupils of a secondary school in Roermond ask if they can visit Partners of Innovation in Amsterdam. They are writing a paper on renewable energy in South Africa and are eager to ask Emiel some questions. Having twelve years of experience in the field, Emiel is  happy to share some of his experience and inside information.

¨My work on renewable energy in Africa started when we conducted a research for the European Commission in 2005. We wanted to know more about market opportunities for European companies to invest in renewable energy in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Our involvement was surprising to begin with, because no one of our team had ever been there. But we worked together with 15 local advisors.

The European Commission elected our project proposal because of our approach: not only did we want to explore investment opportunities for companies in Europe, we also focused on the people in the countries there. If we want to make a change for the long term, we need to consolidate activities for and with the people living there.

We selected 5 countries in each continent, 5 from Asia, 5 from Latin America and 5 from Africa. Using data from the World Bank, we could extrapolate our findings from these 15 countries to countries we hadn´t researched. In this way, we were able to provide useful information about more than 100 developing countries.

Core of our approach was the contact we had (and made) with local organizations and experts. We found them by searching the internet. Some people came up more than once in our searches and we knew they played an important role. We asked these experts if they wanted to cooperate and get involved in our project.

Key things we wanted to find out was the do´s and don´ts of renewable project investments by looking at the existing ones. What was working well and what was causing problems? This is vital information for new project ideas. To our surprise, we saw that the majority of projects were donor driven, supported by foreign NGO money. Once the money supply stopped, the activities came to an end too. People were unsufficiently attached to the activities to be able to carry them forward without (financial) help from abroad.

Another thing that led to problems were cultural differences. In a project of Solar Home Systems in Indonesia, we saw that the collection of money from the homes with solar panels installed was a problem. The families didn´t trust the guy who was sent to collect the money. The reason, so it turned out to be, was the age of the young man, an older man didn´t have any problems earning the trust and receiving the money.

In the years after 2005 I focused more and more on Sub Saharan Africa. In both Asia and Latin America there was already much work in progress in renewable energy. In Sub Saharan Africa there´s almost nothing, most of the people don´t even have electricity and use traditional fuels like charcoal and fire wood for cooking.

One project that became a success is Bio2Watt in South Africa. Bio2Watt is aimed at producing biofuels using animal (cow) manure. In 2009 I worked on a project proposal to find suitable fiancial funding for the initial idea. At this moment, it´s the largest producer of biofuels in South Africa and probably the whole of Sub Saharan Africa, supplying the BMW factory.¨

What do you think has the most potential in Sub Sahara Afrika?

¨After having experience with all types of renewable energy projects I believe bioenergy has the best chances of financial viability. In this part of the world people are still very dependent on agriculture. It´s the largest economic sector and therefore has the most potential to get results. Now, a lot of organic waste streams and residues are not being re-used but are potentially a great source of energy. The companies that are successful often grow a combination of crops, and don´t just grow one product.

Currently I´m working on a feasablity study on converting household waste to energy in Ogun State in Nigeria. This is a very interesting project, since it´s a new approach for that region. In many places people still use diesel generators, our project aims at replacing them in the future with more sustainable alternatives.¨

Dutch Agreement on Resources paves way to circular economy

On January 24th the Dutch government and 180 parties signed the Agreement on Resources. Partners for Innovation too, was one of the signers.

It is agreed that in 2050 that the Dutch economy is completely ‘circular’. To accomplish this, every party (research institutes, companies, governmental bodies) formulated its own ambitions.

Our mission: closing material cycles

Our mission is to close material cycles by working with partners on:
  • products and packaging that are fully recyclable
  • high value secondary material streams
  • litter prevention
  • products made of recyclable materials (biobased/recycled and in some cases biodegradable)
  • smart technology supporting Circular Economy
  • products and packaging with a positive (environmental) impact

And this is what we do:

We:

  • set up and coordinate circular innovation projects with (chain)partners
  • give CIRCO Design Classes and Business Design Tracks
  • conduct Life Cycle Assessments & Quick scans
  • have written the “Guidelines designing with recycled plastics” and we can support companies in implementing the guidelines
  • carry out surveys and feasibility studies
  • write successful project proposals to obtain financing

Plastics

Beside signing the Agreement on Resources, Partners for Innovation plays an active role in the creation of the Supply Chain Agreement on Plastics. We work together with partners in the supply chain on appliances for PHA and in another project we are looking for ways to solve the problems in the silicon sealant tubes in the plastics cycle.

Contact

Ingeborg Gort-Duurkoop  i.gort@partnersforinnovation.com

Related articles

Masterplan on the Plastics Cycle

Masterclass Circular Economy for CEO’s of innovative companies

Download

The Guide to Sustainable Packaging

Designing with recycled Plastics – guidelines

 

Partners for Innovation enters fourth year of audits in EU biofuels industry

The demand for biofuels has rapidly increased over the years. Regulations on fossil fuels have become stricter and companies take on opportunities for sustainable alternatives.

European biofuel companies typically produce renewable fuel from waste such as used cooking oil, animal fat and waste oils of vegetable oil refineries. Some also produce renewable fuel from commercially available vegetable oils.

olive oil

Since 2013 Control Union Certifications and Partners for Innovation work together to verify if European biofuel companies comply with the requirements of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program.

The RFS program is a US program aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide robust and achievable growth of the biofuels industry. The program is part of the US Energy Policy Act of 2005 and expanded under the US Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

Companies that produce biofuel need 3-yearly updates of engineering reviews to be able to export their biofuels to the US.  Control Union’s inspection and certification services are globally recognised.

Contact

Peter Vissers p.vissers@partnersforinnovation.com

Thomas Dietz t.dietz@partnersforinnovation.com

Loek Verwijst (Control Union Certifications) 

More information

Bioenergy

CUC website 

US EPA RFS website

The Finance Catalyst – open for project proposals

From September Partners for Innovation is welcoming project proposals on renewable energy in Sub Saharan Africa. Working for the Finance Catalyst, we offer support & advice on project development, -structuring and finance. The Finance Catalyst links small-and medium-scale renewable energy projects to finance opportunities.

Africa-EU Energy Partnership

De Finance Catalyst is carried out through the RECP (the Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme). The RECP is a multi-donor programme that supports the development of markets for renewable energy in Africa. It was launched by more than 35 African and European Ministers and Commissioners under the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP).

Criteria

Project proposals can be submitted online through the RECP website. The advisory support is available to all proposals that meet a number of criteria. Only projects with a cumulative generation capacity between 0.5-50 MW or aggregated investments in the range of € 1-70 million are eligible (this can include distributed generation). Also, projects must be situated in sub-Saharan Africa. The remaining criteria are found on the RECP website.

Read more about the Finance Catalyst

Read more about the RECP

Contact

Thomas Dietz t.dietz@partnersforinnovation.com

Peter Vissers p.vissers@partnersforinnovation.com

Meet JACK: the foldable e-scooter

Amsterdam is booming  when it comes to tourism. The number of people visiting the Dutch capital has increased over the years and reached a record level this year. This asks for smart solutions. Residents, tourists and commuters need to be able to move from A to B safely and sensibly.

E-scooter

One of the smart solutions is presented by LEEV Mobility, a company based in Amsterdam. They develop and market innovative light electrical vehicles for personal use. They wany us to meet JACK, a compact e-scooter / step.

Friendly for us and the environment

JACK is best used for short distances in the city: its light weight makes it easy to fold and carry along. A welcome alternative to the fumes of the diesel and gas engines. The first model of this e-scooter is now brought on the market.

CO₂ impact

Partners for Innovation assists LEEV in conducting the feasibility study on the rental model of JACK. We assess the CO₂ impact and advise on how to bring it down. We also support in meeting the reporting requirements, finding suitable partners and we provide input for the business plan.

Contact

Peter Karsch p.karsch@partnersforinnovation.com