Oct 01,2017

AMMAN — A group of 30 international experts on Thursday convened in Amman to discuss ways to upscale sustainable energy investments in community buildings in Jordan, according to a joint statement from the West Asia — North Africa (WANA) Institute, Chatham House, EDAMA, and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC).

Citing the increased energy demands due to the large refugee influx in the Kingdom’s host communities, the experts called for an acceleration of energy efficiency and renewable energy measures in buildings across Jordan.

These measures should be implemented as part of the Jordan Response Plan for the Syrian Crisis, a three-year vision led by the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation to ensure the integration of humanitarian aid and long-term national resilience, the statement said.

The experts of the “Energy & Water Working Group of the Moving Energy Initiative” discussed ways to increase investment inefficiency retrofitting and solar energy for community buildings such as schools, hospitals and houses of worship in Jordan and Lebanon.

These measures will help Jordan in reaching its goal of having 10 per cent of its primary energy supply being renewable in 2020, combined with a 20 per cent reduction in energy consumption, according to the statement.

The meeting identified the main challenges facing the Kingdom, including the coordination with local and national authorities, the need for owner and user engagement as well as financing opportunities and management.

“Today, we heard about the tens of thousands of JDs in energy and water bill savings that are possible for a school or a hospital each year. The question is how these savings can be reinvested to generate more benefits for local communities,” Glada Lahn of UK based Chatham House was quoted in the statement as saying.

The participants also reviewed trends in refugee employment across Jordan. “It is valuable to explore ideas for training Syrian refugees to work in sustainable energy projects,” Dorsey Lockhart from the WANA Institute said in the statement.

The Moving Energy Initiative is a partnership between Chatham House, Energy4Impact, Practical Action, the UK’s Department for International Development, the UNHCR and the NRC that works to change the way energy is delivered in situations of human displacement, the statement read