From 2000 to 2017, the total investment in developing countries for clean and renewable energy reached USD 138.9 billion. Total flows have grown since 2010, rising from USD 10.0 billion to USD 21.4 billion in 2017. Much more is, however, needed to support developing countries in their energy transition.
Against this background, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has developed a financing platform and is steadily adding partners. Called the Energy Transition Accelerator Financing Platform (ETAF), the platform is helping to change the investment landscape for renewables’ investments. ETAF has also been created with a sense of urgency matching the desperate need to combat the climate crisis. Through investment, the platform supports countries’ climate pledges under the Paris Agreement and contributes to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
ETAF was launched last year in Glasgow on the sidelines of the COP26 summit to close the funding gap to scale renewable energy projects implemented in developing nations. Upon receiving a project proposal submission on ETAF's online platform, a preliminary review is conducted by IRENA to build the project pipeline and prepare the project’s recommendations to ETAF’s funding partners. The Agency assists the project’s proponent with all necessary documentation that will be in place for ETAF’s partners' review and further due diligence.
IRENA will manage the platform, including assessing the integration of Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESGs), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) accountability and submitting progress reports.
On 9 November at COP27, in the IRENA pavilion, ETAF made a significant advance toward its objective with the opening of the call for projects. Launched by IRENA Director-General Francesco La Camera in the presence of distinguished dignitaries, the initiative aims to accelerate key partnerships between investors, public sector and private sector stakeholders.
Urging project developers to start applying immediately, IRENA Director-General Francesco La Camera said, “Today, the real work starts. Let’s identify the projects that can benefit from the ETAF platform and its partners funding. We look forward to receiving your applications and financing them.”
The launch was preceded by a panel discussion titled “Investing in, and financing of RE projects in emerging economies” during which representatives of ETAF’s partners shared their perspective on the scope of operations and strategies in emerging markets. Ahmed Badr, Director of IRENA's Project Facilitation and Support, moderated the discussion.
At an earlier event held at IRENA’s pavilion, three new partners, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), Swiss Re, and Masdar, officially joined the ETAF platform, which is closing in on almost USD 1 Billion in total funding.
Commending the ETAF’s work since its inception, IRENA’s Director-General Francesco La Camera said, “Together with our partners, we can channel international financing to scale renewable energy projects and secure energy for vulnerable communities on the ground.”
In a special ceremony held at the event, ADFD was given a special award in recognition of their pioneering role as ETAF’s founding partner.