Off- and weak-grid appliance impact assessment framework

Introduction

The UK aid funded Low Energy Inclusive Appliances programme (LEIA) aims to accelerate the availability, affordability, efficiency, and performance of a range of low energy inclusive appliances particularly suited to developing country contexts. LEIA was designed with extensive industry consultation regarding the specific challenges and opportunities of the off-grid clean energy access appliance market.

The LEIA programme will be delivered through an international Efficiency for Access Coalition convened by UK aid and Power Africa, involving a range of co-funders. The Efficiency for Access Coalition is coordinated by CLASP, the leading international voice and resource for appliance energy efficiency policies and market acceleration initiatives, working alongside the UK’s Energy Saving Trust, which specializes in energy efficiency product verification, data and insight, advice and research.

The Efficiency for Access coalition is now scaling up and bringing together a range of support mechanisms to accelerate energy efficiency in clean energy access efforts, driving markets for super-efficient technologies, supporting innovation, and improving sector coordination.

 

Background

There is a growing need to consistently and robustly capture the socio-economic impact of end-use appliances on households and businesses to prove and accelerate the market technologies designed for for off- and weak-grid consumers. Additionally with the projected growth of this market the sector must consider early any wider positive or adverse environmental impacts. Currently little exists in the way of an impact framework and associated metrics that are suitable for application with these appliances. Much of the work done to date covers impact of access to clean energy through distributed energy (solar home systems (SHS) & mini grids) [1] and doesn’t not always consider access to energy services through associated appliances or the relative impact of gaining access to different appliances.

Companies, impact investors and other industry stakeholders are seeking ways to efficiently measure and report impact from appliance use in an off- and weak-grid context. There was an overwhelming call for an impact framework from participants at the Efficiency for Access Research Round Table in June 2019. The EforA Secretariat has also carried out stakeholder interviews that confirm the need for a framework through various research projects and solar water pump and refrigeration technical working groups. As a result, the LEIA program will develop a holistic impact assessment framework for four appliances (TVs, fans, refrigerators and solar water pumps) that will be used by donors, investors, companies, academics, and other stakeholders working in the energy access sector.

The Efficiency for Access (EforA) Coalition secretariat (CLASP and EST) is seeking a consultant to work closely with the team to develop an impact framework for off-and weak grid appropriate appliances. This effort will include developing the following:

  • Objective 1: To develop suggested metrics for industry use to report impact (henceforth, impact metrics). These metrics will enable consolidation and reporting on sector level impacts. A close example of this type of an effort are the GOGLA Impact Metrics for reporting impact of solar lanterns and solar home systems. This work will also develop indicators that link the impacts of appliances to other Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs include goals for achieving affordable and clean energy, but also other goals that improved access to appliances can help achieve (e.g. Zero Hunger and No Poverty). Where possible, the impacts framework will also explore links to broader global climate goals and agreements (e.g. Paris and Kigali Agreements) and investigate any negative impacts or unintended consequences that an intervention (to help scale off- and weak-grid appliances) done in isolation can have, and document these as avoidable negative impacts (such interventions include but not limited to research efforts, promotion of business models, developing standards, enabling consumer awareness and market linkages, R&D efforts related to off- and weak grid appliances). That said, impact metrics can only include metrics that the industry will find uncomplicated to report on given the types of data accessible to them, the effort required to develop and report these, and by their willingness for adoption of certain metrics.
  • Objective 2: Develop and make available formulae for impact indicators that the industry may be unable to report on but are nevertheless important to develop to provide a framework that could capture holistic impact. Developing these indicators may require collecting data directly from beneficiaries or from a source other than upstream stakeholders. It is expected that most of these metrics will include impacts linked to broader SDGs, beyond the ones the energy access community has traditionally reported that are based on number of products sold, and greenhouse gas emissions reduced based on displacing dirty fuels with cleaner and modern energy, and efficient use of appliances.

Objectives 1 & 2 are referenced as the impact assessment framework in this RFP.

  • Objective 3: To understand and document the data gaps. The consultant will develop a data gaps document that will inform the LEIA program’s research prioritization. The data gaps document will consolidate and prioritize data that needs to be collected to make the impact framework more robust.

Developing such a framework has potential to move the market by 1) allowing the industry and companies to track and report consistently on impact and providing the evidence base for further investment; 2) enabling impact investors to hasten the due diligence processes for investment; 3) allowing donors and energy access programmes to understand impacts of and make targeted interventions; 4) allowing governments and policy makers to understand developmental potential of off- and weak grid appliances thus improving the enabling environment of these sectors.

 

Submittal

Individuals that wish to respond to this RFP must complete the LEIA prequalification questionnaire. This is a requirement for all sub-recipients of UK DFID funding. Companies or individual consultants must also register as a CLASP Implementing Partner. Registration is easy, and must be completed via the CLASP website before final submittal.

Interested parties are required to submit two separate proposals: A Technical Proposal and a Financial Proposal. The files should be named as per the following example: “[Contractor Name] _ [Technical/Financial] Proposal_RFP [Name].

The Technical Proposal should not exceed 15 pages in length and must include the following elements:

  • A detailed approach and methodology for implementation and management of the project. Include a description of the role of each team member if applicable. [2 to 5 pages]
  • A summary of qualifications of key personnel that will be engaged in the assignment. Technical knowledge in one or all of the key appliances for this projects (TV, Fans, refrigerators or Solar Water Pumps) is an advantage as well as academic research qualification e.g. PhD/MRes (Master of Research). [2 to 5 pages]
  • A summary of impact related experience, in appliances, and related experiences of developing a framework of this nature and in this context, including any experience in energy access for in off-and weak grid communities. [2 to 4 pages]

The Financial Proposal must include the following elements:

  • Detailed budget estimate (in US Dollars) outlining fees and expected expenses for the duration of the project. Detailed budget should include all direct and indirect cost estimates for executing the project, detail specifically:
    • -a breakdown (in days) of the level of effort associated with the activities and a daily rate.

A committee comprised of CLASP and EST will evaluate proposals received from respondents. Selection of the candidate will be based upon the following criteria:

  • Robustness of methodology
  • Relevant qualifications, including working knowledge of the off-grid energy sector, experience in monitoring and evaluation and impact assessment, and broad technical knowledge in mechanical/electrical engineering.
  • Experience in managing and working with diverse stakeholder groups to achieve consensus
  • Total cost and value for money.

The deadline for application is February 7, 2020. Proposals must be submitted online via the CLASP website.

All questions may be addressed to Richa Goyal at Richa.Goyal@est.org.uk. The last date for submission of questions related to this RFP is January 23, 2020. We request all inquiries be made by e-mail and not by phone.