White Paper: Leveraging Energy Access and Off-Grid Technologies to Realize National Social and Economic Development Priorities

By unlocking access to electricity and electricity services, off-grid solar technologies are an ‘enabler’ of several development impacts, including those linked to agriculture, enterprise, health, education, and climate.  

This paper aims to inform energy officials about the substantial benefits of how off-grid solar technologies can significantly contribute to national socio-economic goals—such as boosting crop yields and income, generating green jobs, and strengthening climate adaptation and resilience and collaborating with other ministries, such as those focused on agriculture, enterprise, health, education, and climate, to enhance the utilization of off-grid solar solutions for achieving broader development goal.  

Despite their extensive benefits across multiple sectors, awareness of these solutions is often confined to Energy Ministries and electrification initiatives. To fully harness the impact of off-grid solar electrification, a strategic approach is essential. This involves recognizing its potential and following up with careful planning and execution. This paper highlights the necessity of a more strategic approach to maximize these benefits. 

This white paper was developed by GOGLA, with financial support of The IKEA Foundation and consultations with partners including World Bank/Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP), Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa (BGFA), Efficiency for Access (E4A), Energy Saving Trust (EST), International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), SNV, and World Resource Institute (WRI).