As part of Australian aid's research program, we fund research into infrastructure related aspects of development, such as improving access to services, and ensuring that infrastructure development contributes directly to reducing poverty.
One Goal, Two Paths. Achieving Universal Access to Modern Energy In East Asia and the Pacific
The Report, One Goal, Two Paths [external website] is one of a number of analytical pieces developed through an Australia - World Bank partnership that helps to inform the debate around infrastructure provision in East Asia and the Pacific Region (EAP).
Access to both electricity and modern cooking solutions is essential to address the enduring impacts of poverty. Approximately 170 million people, or 34 million households, in EAP countries do not have electricity connections in their homes. This equates to approximately nine per cent of the region's total population, and 30 per cent of the region's population excluding China. Approximately six times that number, or over 1 billion people, still lack access to modern cooking solutions. Indoor pollution from solid fuels using traditional and inefficient cooking methods is a leading cause of health problems for women and children in the region. However with the right policies and approaches, universal access to energy is within the reach of the region within the next two decades.
The report shows that EAP countries have two steep paths to climb to achieve universal access to modern energy: the first is universal electricity access. This requires supporting both grid and off-grid programs through applying appropriate policies and innovative technical solutions. These solutions can reduce the cost, improve reliability, and provide energy access to all EAP households by 2030. On the second path, a major breakthrough is needed to increase access to modern cooking fuels (natural gas, liquefied petroleum gas, and biogas) and advanced (clean and efficient) cooking stoves, particularly those utilising biomass in poor rural areas.
Green Infrastructure Finance
The Report, Green Infrastructure Finance is one of a number of analytical pieces developed through an Australia â€“ World Bank partnership that helps to inform the debate around infrastructure provision in East Asia and the Pacific Region (EAP).
Increasing concerns over the effects of climate change have heightened the importance of accelerating investments in green infrastructure. Despite global efforts to mobilise required capital flows, the investments still fall far short. Multiple factors affect green investments, making them financially unattractive. Private investment flows, therefore, depend on public sector support. As in many countries, public sector resources are scarce and spread across many competing commitments and can be best used to leverage private funding. However, many governments are unfamiliar with the international funding sources available. To address this challenge, the World Bank, with support from Australia, conducts work on improving the financing opportunities for green infrastructure investments among countries in East Asia.
This report provides a compilation of important initiatives and activities designed to accelerate private investment flows in green growth. It summarises current investment challenges of green projects as well as proposed solutions, financing options, and initiatives that have set the stage for promoting green growth.