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  20 Oct 2021, 17:47
Update : 20 Oct 2021, 19:01

ADB's new energy policy to help expand access to reliable clean energy

  DHAKA, Oct 20, 2021 (BSS) - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved

a new energy policy to support universal access to reliable and affordable
energy services, while promoting the low-carbon transition in Asia and the
Pacific.

   "Energy is central to inclusive socioeconomic development, but the
expansion of energy systems has come at the cost of harmful impacts on our
climate and environment," said ADB President Masatsugu Asakawa.

   "ADB's new energy policy will support our developing member countries
(DMCs) in the critical and urgent task of expanding access to reliable,
affordable, and clean energy." he added.

  The ADB President said this new policy locks in ADB's strong commitment
that it will not fund new coal power production.

   "Together with our elevated ambition to deliver $100 billion in climate
financing to our DMCs in 2019-2030, it provides a clear path for ADB's
contribution to an environmentally sustainable energy future," he said.

   An ADB press release said progress on access to energy has been rapid
across developing Asia and the Pacific. But, roughly 350 million people in
the region do not have an adequate supply and about 150 million people still
have no access to electricity.

   Continuing economic growth and urbanization will require developing
affordable and reliable energy systems with substantial additional
electricity-generating capacity.

   To respond, International Energy Agency scenarios suggest the region's
installed electricity-generating capacity could increase by about 7% per
annum, from 3,386 gigawatts in 2019 to 6,113 gigawatts by 2030.

   Investments in renewable energy generation in the region could reach $1.3
trillion per annum by 2030, doubling the amount from the previous decade.

   ADB's 2021 Energy Policy will guide ADB support to the region as it
responds to these changes both in terms of energy access and security, and
climate change and environmental sustainability. The policy is based on five
principles:

   1. Securing Energy for a Prosperous and Inclusive Asia and the Pacific.
ADB will help its DMCs secure energy for development by supporting
electrification programs; promoting cleaner cooking, heating, and cooling;
improving energy efficiency across supply and consumption chains; and
promoting social inclusion, gender equality, and partnerships.

   2. Building a Sustainable and Resilient Energy Future. ADB will help its
DMCs increase energy efficiency, deploy more renewable and low-carbon energy,
and integrate climate and disaster resilience into energy sector operations.

   The policy formalizes ADB's current practice of not financing new coal-
fired power and heating plants. ADB will support a planned phase-out of coal
in the region, and will commit to a just transition that promotes
sustainable, inclusive, and resilient livelihoods for all in affected
communities. The policy also recognizes DMCs' request for access to
affordable, new technologies.

   3. Supporting Institutions, Private Sector Participation, and Good
Governance. ADB will support the institutional development, financial
sustainability, and good governance of energy sector institutions and
companies, as well as private sector participation.

   ADB will also help create the policy frameworks needed to manage the
energy transition, including helping its DMCs to update and strengthen their
nationally determined contributions and long-term strategies for
decarbonization under the Paris Agreement.

   4. Promoting Regional Cooperation and Integration. ADB will promote
regional energy cooperation and the integration of energy systems to
strengthen energy security and increase cross-border access to cleaner energy
sources.

   5. Integrated Cross-Sector Operations to Maximize Development Impact. ADB
will continue to combine finance, knowledge, partnerships, and its country-
focused approach to deliver integrated solutions with comprehensive and
magnified development impacts.

   Consistent with ADB's Strategy 2030, the policy adopts a common but
differentiated approach in line with each DMC's level of economic
development, resource endowment, respective capabilities, and nationally
determined low-carbon transition pathway.

   ADB will prioritize essential energy access in the poorest and most
vulnerable countries through greater use of low-carbon and renewable energy
sources and rehabilitate infrastructure to enhance energy security and
climate resilience.

   ADB has made a significant contribution to the region's energy sector with
total financing of over $42 billion from 2009 to 2020 but the region's energy
financing needs far exceed the resources of any single actor.

   The new policy prioritizes ADB's resources to leverage commercial
financing where possible, to tackle the most difficult energy challenges.

   ADB is committed to aligning all its operations with the goals of the
Paris Agreement and this month raised its ambition to deliver $100 billion in
cumulative climate financing from its own resources from 2019-2030.

   This will support climate adaptation and mitigation in all sectors
including energy. At least 75 percent of ADB's operations by number of
projects will feature climate adaptation and mitigation initiatives by 2030.

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