Off-grid renewable energy solutions have emerged as mainstream and support the expanding access to modern energy services in a timely and environmentally sustainable manner. Off-grid renewables are able to deliver a wide spectrum of electricity services for households, public services, commercial and industrial uses. The number of people served by off-grid renewables globally has expanded six-fold since 2011, reaching nearly 133 million people in 2016.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development positions access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy as a key pillar of Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7). Universal electricity access requires concerted action across multiple elements of an enabling environment. These include policies and regulations, delivery and financing models, institutional frameworks, capacity building, technology adaptation and cross sector-linkages.
This latest brief from IRENA captures some of these trends and discusses the key components of an enabling environment to scale-up off-grid deployment.
Illustration Photo: Solar panels for Off-grid house near Orange, New South Wales, Australia (credits: Takver / Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0))