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Climate information for integrated renewable electricity generation (CIREG)

Research project BR/175/A2/CIREG (Research action BR)


Persons :

  • Dhr.  THIERY Wim - Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB)
    Financed belgian partner
    Duration: 1/11/2017-31/10/2020

Description :

PROJECT DESCRIPTION

Increasing the share of renewable resources in the total energy mix can reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and thus is a promising pathway to meeting increasing energy demands. Since renewable energy sources depend on climatic conditions and are thus impacted by climate change and variability, decisions in the energy sector must be backed by climate services. Many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are facing already an energy crisis. This will be engraved because GDP and electricity demand in most SSA countries is rising faster than electricity generation, whilst in the next two to three decades population in SSA is predicted to double, increasing hence the already huge demands. Countries in SSA are now at a crossroad between mainly fossil-fuel driven and a renewable power production mix and current decisions will affect their future development, GHG emissions and energy prices. Presently, many SSA countries have a high share of hydro-power in their energy portfolios, whilst other renewable sources for electricity generation (e.g. wind, solar) are much less developed. However, the use of renewable sources can entail unplanned side-effects on ecosystem functions and services, underscoring another dilemma in the decision-making today. Given the projected climate variability and change in SSA, electricity generation through renewable sources such as hydro, wind or solar is likely to be challenged. The aim of this project (CIREG) is the elaboration of a (model-based) support for decision-makers in the energy sector by establishing and providing necessary climate services covering all spatio-temporal scales from short-term to scenario projections and from local to transboundary and large river basin scales while following a transdisciplinary approach. CIREG thus will consider the entire water-energy-food-climate nexus, because decisions taken in the energy sector will inevitably have a feedback on water supply and food production.


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