Global LEAP recently announced the results of the inaugural Global LEAP Outstanding Off-Grid Appliances Awards competition (Global LEAP Awards), an international competition to identify and promote the best, most energy-efficient appliances for use on off-grid (i.e. low-voltage DC) clean energy systems like solar home systems (SHSs). By enhancing consumer trust and reducing energy costs, high quality, energy-efficient off-grid appliances support and enable demand for off-grid clean energy systems like SHSs and renewable mini-grids. These systems and the modern electric services they provide in turn displace hazardous, expensive pre-modern fuels like kerosene and charcoal and deliver enhanced service, improved quality of life, and other socioeconomic and environmental benefits for off-grid households and communities.
Quality-assured, appropriately designed, super-efficient appliances maximize the benefits of off-grid energy service while minimizing the costs of energy supply. In doing so, they both create and enable demand for off-grid clean energy systems—and they are in very high demand by the retailers and distributors across the developing world that sell these systems.
Despite this pent up demand, presently there is very little information available about the off-grid appliance market as a whole. Most appliance manufacturers are unaware of the opportunities presented by the clean energy access market, and are unfamiliar with the market’s needs. Clean energy access entrepreneurs often do not know how to find or identify high quality appliances, or how to best source and develop their own products. Policymakers and international development stakeholders do not have sufficient market and product performance data necessary to design and implement effective interventions to support quality and energy performance standards, innovation competitions such as the Global LEAP Awards, or other market incentive programs.
CLASP, as a partner in Global LEAP, is conducting research to help bridge these gaps in market intelligence in order to allow industry, investors, multi-lateral development donors and other stakeholders to make faster, better informed decisions about the off-grid marketplace and accelerate the uptake of clean energy access technologies.
This research project will contribute to Global LEAP’s objectives of:
- Enhancing global awareness and understanding of the global off-grid appliance and low-voltage DC off-grid energy system marketplace, and its key actors, trends, drivers, and challenges; and
- Highlighting business and/or market intervention opportunities for companies and other stakeholders working in or considering the off-grid appliance and energy system marketplace.