ADB's Work in the Energy Sector
ADB has been providing assistance to its developing member countries in the energy sector for more than 40 years. Its support has been focused on:
- enhancing access to clean and modern energy
- scaling up the deployment of renewable energy
- strengthening electricity transmission and distribution systems to integrate more renewable energy
- improving demand-side energy efficiency in buildings, transport and industries
- promoting power sector reforms governance and regional integration.
ADB Energy Policy
ADB's 2009 Energy Policy aims to help developing member countries provide reliable, adequate, and affordable energy for economic growth in a socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable way. The policy enables ADB energy operations to be aligned with the organization’s overall strategy of emphasizing energy security, facilitating a transition to a low-carbon economy and universal energy access, and for achieving ADB’s vision of a region free of poverty. The energy policy review is in progress to ensure it is aligned with Sustainable Development Agenda and Paris Agreement on climate change.
The 3 Pillars of ADB's Energy Policy
1. Promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy
ADB is working to introduce advanced technologies to increase energy efficiency in the region while also increasing the share of renewable energy in the region’s energy mix.
ADB has integrated clean energy into its project development process and has put in place financing to help decrease the cost of clean energy projects. It has launched initiatives for the rapid deployment of low-carbon technologies in the region.
2. Maximizing access to energy for all
ADB is broadening its support for greater energy access not only financially, but also by identifying innovative solutions and sharing information with partner development institutions, national governments and the private sector.
These innovative solutions include deploying distributed renewable energy, developing appropriate business models that enable and build markets for clean energy, and harnessing multiple benefits from working with other sectors and industries.
3. Promoting energy sector reform, capacity building, and governance
ADB continues to engage governments in policy dialogues to determine needed sector reforms and promote good governance. This involves helping developing member countries implement policies, regulations and incentives that will allow power systems to transition to clean energy, ensure universal access and provide affordable, reliable and sustainable supply.
Energy Issues in Asia and the Pacific
Energy demand is projected to almost double in the Asia and Pacific region by 2030. Widespread energy poverty across Asia has curtailed development. In 2018, developing Asia had about 200 million people without access to electricity, and 1.7 billion without access to clean cooking.1 Innovative ways to generate power in a socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable manner are imperative and urgent.
This section highlights the energy issues and trends that ADB has identified as priorities in developing Asia and the Pacific to achieve access to clean energy for all, and contribute to meeting global climate goals under the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).
Energy efficiency is emerging as one of the key options that can help nations in Asia and the Pacific meet the region's growing energy needs in a clean and effective way.
Increasing the efficiency of energy use and supply yields lower costs and increases availability of energy. It also produces large environmental and economic benefits:
- It eases pressure on fossil fuel demand and energy prices.
- It improves energy security.
- It reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
Technical advancement and market dynamics offer greater opportunities to improve energy efficiency, have increased the viability of new and renewable sources of energy, and have expanded the options for off-grid and community-based electricity supply.
Signing Ceremony of the Uzbekistan Navoi Scaling Solar 100MW Project - Ashok LavasaSpeech by Ashok Lavasa, ADB Vice President for Private Sector Operations and Public–Private Partnerships, at the Signing Ceremony of the Uzbekistan Navoi Scaling Solar 100MW Project, 22 December 2020
A Review of the Strategy for the Northeast Asia Power System InterconnectionThis paper summarizes and updates the study of a strategy for the Northeast Asia Power System Interconnection that spans Japan, Mongolia, the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, and the Russian Federation.
Transforming Power Development Planning in the Greater Mekong Subregion: A Strategic and Integrated ApproachThis publication provides guidance on how governments and utilities in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) can develop sustainable power development plans based on current international best practices.
A Brighter Future for Maldives Powered by Renewables: Road Map for the Energy Sector 2020–2030This publication serves as a guide for Maldives’ energy transition—from being powered by costly and polluting fossil fuels to being sustained by clean and efficient renewable energy sources.
Strategy for Northeast Asia Power System InterconnectionThis brochure describes a strategy for a Northeast Asia Power System Interconnection and the use of renewable energy resources in Mongolia’s South Gobi region.
Access to Energy
Access to modern, cleaner energy is essential to sustainable human development. The majority of the world’s energy poor are living in Asia and the Pacific. More than 200 million people in the region have no electricity and about 1.7 billion people have no access to clean cooking.
Energy is crucial in achieving the SDGs, SDG7 in particular that seeks to “ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.” Access to energy helps alleviate poverty, improve health conditions, and ensure energy security. Sustainable energy for all anchored on clean energy also builds resilience against the adverse impact of climate change.
Regional Cooperation on Renewable Energy Integration to the Grid: Technical Assistance Consultant’s ReportConsultants' reports describe activities by a consultant or group of consultants related to preparing a technical assistance project. This document dated June 2020 is provided for the ADB regional project 51148-001.
Asia and the Pacific Renewable Energy Status ReportThis report provides a comprehensive overview of renewable energy developments in Asia and the Pacific. It covers 18 countries in the region considered fundamental to the clean energy transition.
Supporting Implementation of Environment-Related Sustainable Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific: Mongolia Subproject TA Consultant's ReportConsultants' reports describe activities by a consultant or group of consultants related to preparing a technical assistance project. This document dated May 2020 is provided for the ADB regional project 50158-001.
Harmonizing Power Systems in the Greater Mekong Subregion: Regulatory and Pricing Measures to Facilitate TradeThis publication identifies bottlenecks to regional power trading in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) and proposes solutions to overcome them.
Supporting Implementation of Environment-Related Sustainable Development Goals in Asia and the Pacific: Viet Nam’s MONRE Environmental M&E Implementation Guidance – TA Consultant’s ReportConsultants' reports describe activities by a consultant or group of consultants related to preparing a technical assistance project. This document dated February 2020 is provided for the ADB regional project 50158-001.
Sector Governance and Reform
Policies, capabilities and institutions are just as important as transmission and distribution lines or solar parks. ADB supports its developing member countries in:
- establishing competitive electricity markets, adopting market pricing mechanisms, and regulating monopolies
- encouraging private sector participation, particularly public-private partnerships
- supporting research, legislation, technology development, and regulation
- adopting tariff structures to promote energy conservation
- training in energy planning, demand forecast, financial management, operations and maintenance of assets, and economic assessment
Shaping Asia’s Energy FutureFatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, on what should drive energy investment decisions in Asia and why the region is critical in the fight against climate change.
Improving Energy Efficiency in South AsiaOpportunities for energy efficiency in South Asian power systems exist mostly in the areas of operation of thermal power plants, electricity transmission and delivery systems and in demand management and conservation at the user-end.
Improving Regulatory Environment for a Regional Power Market in South AsiaFor cross-border electricity trade in South Asia to be smooth across the region, policy and regulatory environments governing the power sector need to be harmonized.
TA 8653-PRC Final Report: Strategic Analysis and Suggestions to Attain Low-Carbon Development Targets in 2020Consultants' reports describe activities by a consultant or group of consultants related to preparing a technical assistance project. This document dated August 2016 is provided for the ADB project 47053-001 in the People's Republic of China.
Enhancing the Power Sector's Legal and Regulatory Framework: Final ReportConsultants' reports describe activities by a consultant or group of consultants related to preparing a technical assistance project. This document dated March 2016 is provided for the ADB project 46486-001 in Myanmar.
Regional cooperation can play a vital role in ensuring energy security in a sustainable manner. Subregional power trade can help meet energy demand, and maximize scarce natural resources.
Together with regional and subregional networks, ADB can play a pivotal role in promoting effective cooperation on energy among countries in Asia and the Pacific.
First India-Bangladesh Power Interconnection Feeds Greater Access to ElectricityAs demand for electricity rises in Bangladesh, the country’s first cross-border connection with India is helping address gaps in energy-poor areas and bring economic benefits to both sides of the border.
Working together in Central and West AsiaThe CAREC program has financed roads, railways, and energy infrastructure across Central and West Asia. Its new strategy will build on this success and take the program in new directions.
A New Era of Cooperation for Central Asia - Takehiko NakaoCentral Asia is a dynamic and fast-changing region. Over the past couple of decades, it has shown that increased regional cooperation is indispensable to achieving development goals.
East Asian Integration: Towards an East Asian Economic CommunityEast Asia has the opportunity to build bridges within the region at a time when the United States appears to be building walls around itself.
Opening Remarks at the CAREC Energy Investment Forum - Wencai ZhangOpening remarks by ADB Vice-President Wencai Zhang at the CAREC Energy Investment Forum on 24 October 2016 in Islamabad, Pakistan.
Clean Energy Program
The ADB Clean Energy Program aims to lower energy-related emissions, extend supply of modern energy services to all, and improve economy-wide energy efficiency to effectively reduce the rate of growth of energy demand. All these objectives will help ADB DMCs attain energy security.
Among the activities that ADB is implementing under the program are (i) expansion of clean energy investments in DMCs; (ii) implementation of demand-side clean energy components in ADB-funded projects in water, transport, urban, and agriculture sectors; and (iii) monitoring of the pipeline of clean energy projects and achievements against the outcome indicators of the 2009 Energy Policy.
The Clean Energy Program includes energy efficiency, renewable energy, energy access, carbon financing, climate technology deployment, and policy and regulatory development. All these areas are meant to reinforce each other and propel ADB DMCs to a low-carbon growth paths.