Written by Henry Neondo
The Kyoto Protocol’s clean development mechanism (CDM), the international market-based tool that incentivizes greenhouse gas emission reduction projects in developing countries, reports that while the numbers of registered Programmes of Activities (PoAs) have surpassed 100, Africa accounts for only 25 per cent of this.
This compares to just 2 per cent of regular CDM projects. The top three project types for PoAs are household energy efficiency projects (20 per cent), small-scale solar projects (19 per cent) and methane avoidance projects (18 per cent).
The milestone was passed on a day that saw the registration of seven PoAs: a small-scale solar project in Thailand (8457); small-scale hydro projects in China (8259) and Brazil (7062); a solar LED project in Kenya (7489); cookstove projects in Mexico (8521) and in eight African countries (7359); and a renewable energy project in China (8526).
Under PoA, an unlimited number of similar project activities, over a wide area or region, can be administered under a single programme umbrella. They are particularly suited to small-scale or micro-scale projects. After a PoA is registered, similar projects can be added over time without the need to register each one individually, reducing transaction costs and making the CDM more attractive and more accessible to least developed countries (LDCs).
“For most LDCs, especially in Africa, single CDM projects are often too small to be viable,” said Peer Stiansen, Chair of the CDM Executive Board. “The recent growth in numbers shows that PoAs are overcoming this barrier and extending the benefits of the CDM to regions not previously able to take advantage of the mechanism.”
Since the PoA procedures were adopted by the CDM Executive Board in 2007, 116 have been registered in 42 countries and more than 250 are currently in the PoA pipeline. Of the active PoA projects, 60 per cent have entered the pipeline since the beginning of 2012.
“PoAs promote technologies with significant co-benefits to local communities,” said Mr. Stiansen. “These projects help people gain access to a range of benefits, from energy efficient cookstoves and lighting, to solar energy and even clean drinking water.”