The Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) is working on a “Regional Initiative for Promoting Small-Scale Renewable Energy Applications in rural areas of the Arab region (REGEND)”. This regional initiative is a Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) funded project and aims to improve the livelihood, economic benefits, social inclusion and gender equality of Arab rural communities particularly marginalized groups, by addressing energy poverty, water scarcity and vulnerability to climate change and other natural resources challenges in three targeted countries, namely Jordan, Lebanon and Tunisia. Gender empowerment and gender equality constitute an integral part of REGEND’s activities and expected outputs and are considered a cross-cutting priority along the various phases of its implementation.
In this context, ESCWA is organizing in partnership with the National Agency for Energy Conservation (ANME), an Awareness Day on “The Promotion of Renewable Energy Applications: Current State and Perspectives”, with the participation of all economic sector stakeholders involved in the region of Mahdia, in order to sensitize them about:
(1) the advantages, challenges and prospects of the use of renewable energies;
(2) the national strategy and policy for the promotion of renewable energies;
(3) the institutional, regulatory and incentive frameworks in force to promote renewable energies;
(4) existing small, medium and large-scale technologies and associated applications in the different economic activity sectors;
(5) the procedures for the implementation of renewable energy systems;
(6) the existing financial mechanisms dedicated to the implementation of renewable energy systems and the role of the private sector.
The recommendations of this awareness day will serve as a basis for the development of an action plan for the Mahdia region integrating the gender dimension to increase investment in the use of appropriate renewable energy applications for local economic activities, especially in the agricultural sector and primarily affecting rural women, and supporting the implementation of national strategies, policies and action plans in the field of promoting the use of renewable energies. The awareness day will also contribute to bringing potential beneficiaries of renewable energy systems closer to professionals, building partnership relations and boosting the local network of competencies through the exhibition of renewable energy equipment scheduled for the day and the B to B meetings that will take place.