Cities Crucial to Attaining Energy Efficiency across Sectors: Book Launch
January 28 2010
During the World Bank’s Sustainable Development Network Week 2010, the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP) hosted the launch of its new flagship publication, “Public Procurement of Energy Efficiency Services: Lessons from International Experience.” The event was attended by over 35 people and was inaugurated by ESMAP’s Program Manager, Amarquaye Armar. He noted that cities are an ideal platform for energy efficiency across major sectors. He said the new publication is a key part of EECI’s “think tank” analytical work.

The book’s Lead Author, Jas Singh, Senior Energy Specialist, ESMAP presented an overview of the book and summarized its key findings.  He noted that the public sector remains largely untapped in its potential for energy efficiency and could serve as a market leader in the World Bank’s client countries through the procurement of energy efficiency services.  By using energy savings performance contracts (ESPCs), he noted that government agencies can outsource the entire project cycle to a third party.  However, he cautioned that such mechanisms needed to be carefully developed based on the local market and procurement conditions.  He concluded that World Bank can play a significant role in guiding this procurement process for its clients and possibly finance many of these investments.

Abha Joshi-Ghani, Manager of the World Bank’s Urban Development, Finance, Economics and Urban Department, said the book will help cities create fiscal space for other socioeconomic priorities.  She also pointed out the practicality and flexibility offered to municipalities to choose procurement approaches based on their unique needs.  Meanwhile, Ira Birnbaum, Energy Efficiency and Global Climate Change Coordinator, Europe and Eurasia Bureau of U.S. Agency for International Development, shared his experiences and lessons learned with implementing energy efficiency projects using ESPCs in Europe. He said, the importance of energy security and rising energy prices were main drivers for USAID’s robust energy efficiency program in the region.

Furthermore, Chandra Govindarajalu, Senior Energy Specialist in the Bank’s Middle East and North Africa Region, hailed ESMAP for preparing an operationally relevant publication.  He said ESMAP had recently supported a regional energy efficiency assessment which found substantial opportunities for energy efficiency in its client countries.  The report he said, would help clients find new ways to achieve large scale impacts.  He appealed to ESMAP to widely disseminate findings of the report in local languages and produce summaries.


The event concluded with a question and answer session.


Miki Endo, Operations Officer, ESMAP 

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