Akol Kuan is a civil engineering major and MaserCard Foundation Scholar at UC Berkeley.
In RAEL, Akol is focusing on the design and operation of clean energy mini-grids for refugee communities, with a project focused on the UNHCR Kakuma Refugee Camp. Kakuma is a town in northwestern Turkana County, Kenya. It is the site of a UNHCR refugee camp, established in 1969. The population of Kakuma town was over 180,000 in 2016, having grown from around 8,000 in 1990.
Serena is an Energy Engineering major at UC Berkeley, where she is engaged in number of activities, including:
Working at the Student Environmental Resource Center under the Zero Waste Research Center to help food vendors achieve zero waste goals, creating a culture of zero waste within the student body through education, and conducting research on compostable plastics recycling.
During the Spring 2018 semester Serena is leading a group of 9 students in working with the local nonprofit, Grid Alternatives, to install solar panels on low income family homes in Salinas, California during spring break. Her responsibilities include co-facilitating a class about energy access, equity, energy policy, and solar energy technology in California as well as coordinating housing, fundraising, and transportation to the location.
In RAEL Serena is focusing on the design, operation, power systems optimization, and social impacts of the clean energy mini-grid powering the Human Needs Project in Kibera, Kenya.”
RAEL has partnered with both the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and a number of other groups worldwide that are engaging the Vatican and interested partners to utilize the dialog around The Encyclical to promote equity, sustainable development and climate protection.
Events in this initiative include:
RAEL and Vatican publications such as:
November 2, 2016 roundtable:
Actualizing the Vision of Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home
Kammen, D. M., Alstone, P. and Gershenson, D. (2014) “Energy for sustainable and equitable development,” Sustainable Humanity, Sustainable Nature: Our Responsibility, Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Extra Series 41, Vatican City 2014 Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, Acta 20, Vatican City 2014
Climate Change, Consumerism, and the Pope
David Mozersky is the Founding Director of the Program on Conflict, Climate Change and Green Development. An expert on Sudan and South Sudan, he has been involved in conflict prevention efforts in Africa since 2001, with a specific interest in mediation, negotiation and peace processes. He has worked with the International Crisis Group, the African Union High-Level Panel on the Sudans, and Humanity United, among others. He has written extensively about the conflicts and peacemaking efforts in the Horn of Africa, and has testified or presented before the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, the Canadian Parliament, and South Sudanese Parliament. David has authored and co-authored more than two dozen International Crisis Group reports and briefing papers, and his writing has appeared in the Harvard International Review, International Herald-Tribune, Financial Times-Europe, and other publications.
Dave now directs Energy Peace Partners to put many of the ideas developed in this program in practice.
Recent forecasts suggest that African countries must triple their current electricity generation by 2030. Our multicriteria assessment of wind and solar potential for large regions of Africa shows how economically competitive and low-environmental–impact renewable resources can significantly contribute to meeting this demand. We created the Multicriteria Analysis for Planning Renewable Energy (MapRE) framework to map and characterize solar and wind energy zones in 21 countries in the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) and the Eastern Africa Power Pool (EAPP) and find that potential is several times greater than demand in many countries. Significant fractions of demand can be quickly served with “no-regrets” options—or zones that are low-cost, low-environmental impact, and highly accessible. Because no-regrets options are spatially heterogeneous, international interconnections are necessary to help achieve low-carbon development for the region as a whole, and interconnections that support the best renewable options may differ from those planned for hydropower expansion. Additionally, interconnections and selecting wind sites to match demand reduce the need for SAPP-wide conventional generation capacity by 9.5% in a high-wind scenario, resulting in a 6–20% cost savings, depending on the avoided conventional technology. Strategic selection of low-impact and accessible zones is more cost effective with interconnections compared with solutions without interconnections. Overall results are robust to multiple load growth scenarios. Together, results show that multicriteria site selection and deliberate planning of interconnections may significantly increase the economic and environmental competitiveness of renewable alternatives relative to conventional generation.
Brooke’s undergraduate career was profiled in the CNR Newsletter.
The Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK) is a project partnership between RAEL and Power for All, a global campaign to accelerate the market-based growth of decentralized renewables as the key to achieving universal energy access. The campaign, established in 2014, serves as a collective voice for businesses and civil society focused on off-grid renewable solutions. The research products of this partnership will provide critical evidence needed to support widespread adoption of distributed technologies.
PEAK is an interactive information exchange platform designed to help aggregate and repackage the best research and information on energy access into compelling data-driven stories for a range of target audiences to ensure maximum visibility, usability and discoverability of that information by individuals, organizations and communities working to make energy services accessible to all.
The Power for All Campaign is directed by Kristina Skierka. PEAK research is directed by Dr. Rebekah Shirley, current Postdoctoral Researcher at RAEL.
See PEAK’s Launch Press Release, March 2016
See PEAK products here and look out for our web portal soon to come.
Recently, PEAK conducted a quantitative analysis that examines the policies of five high-growth markets striving to achieve universal energy access — India and Bangladesh in Asia, and Kenya, Tanzania and Ethiopia in Africa — and highlights areas for policy prioritization in Low Energy Access countries. Our research is currently under peer-review. See an unpublished, draft/working version of our manuscript and look out for more information soon.
Isa Ferrall is a MS/Ph.D. student in the Energy and Resources Group and Renewable and Appropriate Energy Lab at the University of California, Berkeley. She is interested in the impact of renewable energy on rural electrification, global development, and the domestic energy sector. Previously, Isa gained experience on both the technical and applied sides of renewable energy. She researched innovative energy materials at Duke University as a National Academy of Engineering Grand Challenge Scholar and at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory as a Department of Energy Intern. She also has analyzed system data for Off-Grid Electric, a solar home system company operating in east Africa. Isa graduated Magna Cum Laude from Duke University in 2015 with distinction in Mechanical Engineering and a Certificate in Energy and the Environment.
For the Human Needs Project full website, click on:
Professor Kammen, serves as the CTO of the Human Needs Project, highlighted how the Kibera Town Center Project provides basic services (water, toilets, showers, laundry) and empowerment services (business skills training, micro-credit, WiFi cafe, health kiosk, green marketplace) to over 800 people per day. These integrated services provide a holistic solution to the challenges of living in a slum. Together, they can help people with a road map to creating a better life.
Kammen demonstrated how clean, local energy can empower vibrant and sustainable community centers. Actress and Human Needs Project Founder and President Connie Nielsen said, “Our vision is to develop a network of community empowerment centers themselves powered by clean energy, which is the most reliable form of power”