NDF - Financing for climate change and development projects

NCF: Financing Sustainable Energy Through Remittances Flows[NDF C3 C1]

29.09.2017
The objective of the project was to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improve resilience of low-income households to climate change impacts.
Bolivia
Financing sustainable energy through remittances flows
Ref: NDF C3 C1

Nordic Partner: Gaia Consulting OY
Local Partner: Fundación AMIBE CODEM/ ACOBE - Asociación de Cooperación Bolivia España
Other Partners: Basel Agency for Sustainable Energy, and Arc Finance
Total Project Cost: EUR 770,666
NCF Financing: EUR 489,550
Agreement Signed: 16 December 2011
Project Classification: Mitigation / Renewable Energy
Duration: 48 Months (completed)
 
Project Objective
The objective of the project was to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improve resilience of low-income households to climate change impacts. In addition to the climate related goals, the project also aimed to reduce the cost for energy in urban and rural low-income households and to raise awareness about cleaner and less energy intensive energy sources. The project has set up an innovative business model that links remittances with the financing of renewable energy (RE) and energy efficiency (EE) products and technologies.
 
Description
The project has encouraged Bolivians living in Spain and/or in Bolivia to channel remittance income to purchase renewable energy products or more energy-efficient appliances for their relatives in Bolivia. These devices will then be delivered to Bolivia. The project has targeted approximately 50,000 Bolivian immigrants living in Spain and 250,000 potential remittance recipients in Bolivia through various marketing and sales measures. The target group in Bolivia was low-income families living in urban and rural areas. The commercial operations, marketing and information sharing are supported by the internet-based platform EcoBazar. The business model is structured to be self-sustaining, and it offers an innovative way to expand business opportunities by tapping into what is best about globalization and international migration.
Since the start of sales, 150 Solar Water Heaters (SWHs) of different sizes and technology have been sold through EcoBazar. However, thousands of additional people will benefit of the project once the activities are ramped up. Women are expected to benefit significantly from the project due to the large amount of home-based work they do.
 
Relevance for Climate Change
The 150 SWHs sold are expected to contribute to total greenhouse gas emission reductions in the range of 8,000 tCO2e over an average operational lifetime of 15 years. Due to the long life time of the devices, the positive climate benefits are expected to continue beyond the timeframe of project implementation.
 
Innovation and Knowledge Transfer
While there are examples of using remittances/immigrants funds to finance houses, or other goods the idea of using remittances to finance renewable energy technology has not been tested before. The premise of this model is that it introduces a new mechanism to transfer remittances in the form of goods rather than in form of cash. Therefore, all financial transactions take place in the developed country (Spain) but the RE will be delivered in the developing country (Bolivia).
The existing business model has the potential for upscaling through accelerated SWH sales, expansion to other RE/EE technologies and expansion to other countries with significant remittance flows and RE/EE needs.
 
 
More information
Final Report

Gaia Consulting Oy
Fundación AMIBE CODEM/ ACOBE - Asociación de Cooperación Bolivia España