Friday, 30 January 2009 13:00

Honduras gets the green light for World Bank energy loan Featured

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Billed as an energy efficiency project, the World Bank has approved a US$30 million interest-free loan to strengthen the Honduran energy sector and improve the performance of the national electric power company, Empresa Nacional de Energía Eléctrica (ENEE).

The Power Sector Efficiency Enhancement Project (PROMEF) has three parts:

• Building ENEE’s management and commercial capacity;
• Renewing and rehabilitating distribution equipment, including the removal of polluted transformers;
• Institutional strengthening and corporate governance
The Honduran finance minister Rebeca Santos said, “This operation addresses an energy reorganization strategy launched by the Government, which requires streamlining the state-owned ENEE and further supporting new investments in renewable energy,"

The Inter-American Development Bank points out that Honduras has an energy intensity index of 3.24 which is just above the regional average suggesting any project designed to increase efficiency is an ideal way to save cash during the economic crisis.

Energy intensity reflects the energy efficiency of a country’s economy and is calculated as units of energy per unit of GDP. It can be affected by a number of factors such as climate and the type of technologies used by major industries.

In comparison to Honduras, Uruguay has the lowest energy intensity index at 0.82 in the region, where as Guyana’s 8.7 is the highest ensuring a poor energy efficiency record.

As Honduras’s energy demand continues to grow at roughly 3% per year it is faced with two choices. It can either fork out hundreds of millions of dollars by installing new power generation capacity or it can spend significantly less on improving energy efficiency.

2009 is unfolding in a storm of climate insecurity and financial turmoil highlighting that energy efficiency programmes are an essential and cost effective way of reducing spending, lowering carbon emissions and conserving limited resources.
Read 1311 times Last modified on Wednesday, 11 February 2015 19:05
Guy Edwards

Guy Edwards is a Research Fellow at the Center for Environmental Studies, Brown University, where he manages a research project on the politics of climate change in Latin America. Along with co-author, Professor Timmons Roberts, he is currently writing a book on Latin American leadership on climate change for MIT Press. He has also written various academic papers, policy briefs and op-eds for a number of different publications. As co-founder of Intercambio Climático and formerly co-editor of the website, Guy has worked closely with the Latin American Platform on Climate and the Latin American office of the Climate and Development Knowledge Network. He has also worked for the Overseas Development Institute, the consultancy River Path Associates and as the resident manager of the Huaorani Ecolodge in the Ecuadorian Amazon.