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Burkina Faso: Growth and Competitiveness Credits 1-4 (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates the Growth and Competitiveness Credit Development Policy Financing series (I–IV) implemented in Burkina Faso between 2012 and 2015. The total cost of the four operations was $359 million equivalent. The first operation was approved by the Board of the International Development Association (IDA) on June 26, 2012, and the last on April 2, Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) evaluates the Growth and Competitiveness Credit Development Policy Financing series (I–IV) implemented in Burkina Faso between 2012 and 2015. The total cost of the four operations was $359 million equivalent. The first operation was approved by the Board of the International Development Association (IDA) on June 26, 2012, and the last on April 2, 2015. The series closed on December 31, 2015. The Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) prepared the report based on interviews, a review of World Bank files, and documents and data collected during a field visit to Burkina Faso in November 2017. The mission met with World Bank staff, government officials, beneficiaries of the reforms, donors, academia, and civil society groups. The evaluation also draws from interviews with the task team leaders and country manager of Burkina Faso. The series followed 11 budget support operations of the Poverty Reduction Support Credits and Grants 1–11 in Burkina Faso and was the only type of development policy operation financed by IDA resources during the period.

Nicaragua: Offgrid Rural Electrification (PERZA) Project (PPAR)

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The Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank Group prepared this Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) on the Nicaragua Offgrid Rural Electrification Project. PERZA’s development objectives were to support Nicaragua in increasing the sustainable provision of electricity services and associated social and economic benefits in selected rural sites in its territory; and Show MoreThe Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank Group prepared this Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) on the Nicaragua Offgrid Rural Electrification Project. PERZA’s development objectives were to support Nicaragua in increasing the sustainable provision of electricity services and associated social and economic benefits in selected rural sites in its territory; and strengthening its institutional capacity to implement its national rural electrification strategy. The World Bank’s financing for the project was $13.47 million of the actual project cost of $26.26 million. The Global Environment Facility financed $3.94 million. The project was appraised on April 23, 2003, approved by the World Bank’s Board on May 15, 2003, and declared effective on November 28, 2003. The project was designed for execution in five years, and the original closing date was December 31, 2008. The project closed on December 31, 2011 after two project closing date extensions of 18 months each and an implementation period of eight years. Ratings for the Offgrid Rural Electrification (PERZA) Project are as follows: Outcome is moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome is substantial, Bank performance is moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance is moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) Complementary infrastructure development, especially road connectivity to local markets, can further increase the welfare impacts of electrification in rural communities. (ii) Solar home systems can be a successful solution for the provision of basic electricity services to poor rural communities outside the reach of the grid if the initial investment cost is subsidized appropriately to make it affordable to the beneficiaries while promoting ownership. (iii) A pilot project consisting of numerous but well-integrated learning-by-doing project activities can improve a client institution’s capacity to implement larger projects in the future successfully.

Gambia CLR Review FY13-16

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This review of the World Bank Group's (WBG) Completion and Learning Review (CLR) covers the Second Joint Partnership Strategy (JPS-2), FY13-FY16, for the Gambia. The JPS-2 was a joint strategy of the WBG and the African Development Bank (AfDB).The Gambia is a small, fragile and landlocked country with a GNI per capita income of USD 430 in 2016.The JPS-2 had eight objectives organized around two Show MoreThis review of the World Bank Group's (WBG) Completion and Learning Review (CLR) covers the Second Joint Partnership Strategy (JPS-2), FY13-FY16, for the Gambia. The JPS-2 was a joint strategy of the WBG and the African Development Bank (AfDB).The Gambia is a small, fragile and landlocked country with a GNI per capita income of USD 430 in 2016.The JPS-2 had eight objectives organized around two pillars or focus areas: (i) enhancing productive capacity and competitiveness; (ii) strengthening the institutional capacity for economic governance and public service delivery. The JPS-2 was aligned with the government's medium term development plan as articulated in its Program for Accelerated Growth and Employment (PAGE) 2012-2016 and the government's long-term plan contained in Vision 2020.The JPS-2 focus areas and objectives were aligned with government's Medium Term Development Plan (PAGE), and its long-term strategy, Vision 2020. The joint strategy and clear division of labor with AfDB provided the foundation for WBG's selectivity. The WBG's program was generally selective in terms of focus areas, objectives and interventions. IEG concurs with some of the key lessons which are summarized as follows: (i) strong donor collaboration is critical but could also have high transactions costs; (ii) country capacity is an important consideration in data collection and quality, and in developing a results framework; and (iii) formal mid-course corrections through the PLR process is even more important in a difficult country circumstances. IEG adds the following lessons: i) Small and fragile countries could benefit from participation in regional integration operations by leveraging limited IDA financing and maximizing development impact. In the case of the Gambia, its participation in regional operations brought benefits to the country in terms of improved technology adoption in agriculture and increased connectivity. ii) To the extent possible, it is important that WBG interventions are aligned to the CPS objectives and their contributions reflected in the results framework. In the case of the Gambia, there were IFC interventions in several areas that were not reflected in the results framework.

China: Hubei Hydropower Development in Poor Areas Project (PPAR)

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This is the Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank Group on the China: Hubei Hydropower Development in Poor Areas Project (IBRD-46660). The project had three project development objectives: (a) to facilitate economic growth in Hubei by expanding electric power generation capacity in an economically and environmentally sustainable Show MoreThis is the Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) of the World Bank Group on the China: Hubei Hydropower Development in Poor Areas Project (IBRD-46660). The project had three project development objectives: (a) to facilitate economic growth in Hubei by expanding electric power generation capacity in an economically and environmentally sustainable manner; (b) to enhance the efficiency of the electricity sector in Hubei by commercializing county-level generation companies; and (c) to contribute to poverty alleviation efforts in poor communities in Hubei. Ratings for Hubei Hydropower Development in Poor Areas Project are as follows: Outcome is satisfactory, Risk to development outcome is moderate, Bank performance is moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance is moderately satisfactory. The main lessons that emerge from the experience of this complex project are the following: (i) Integrating hydropower investments with institutional development and poverty alleviation can yield strong synergies. (ii) The rigorous quality and depth of appraisal for implementing agencies needs to be maintained throughout the project cycle, including project components added late.

Mongolia: Renewable Energy for Rural Access Project (REAP) (PPAR)

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The purpose of this Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) is to evaluate the development outcomes of the Renewable Energy and Rural Electricity Access Project (REAP) in Mongolia. The project’s development objectives (PDOs) were to expand access to electricity and improve reliability of electricity services in selected off-grid soum centers and among the herder population, and to remove Show MoreThe purpose of this Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) is to evaluate the development outcomes of the Renewable Energy and Rural Electricity Access Project (REAP) in Mongolia. The project’s development objectives (PDOs) were to expand access to electricity and improve reliability of electricity services in selected off-grid soum centers and among the herder population, and to remove barriers to the scale-up of renewable energy use. Ratings for the Renewable Energy for Rural Access Project are as follows: Outcome is moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome is significant, Bank performance is moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance is moderately satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) An appropriate balance between affordability and cost recovery is essential for scaling up the adoption of portable renewable energy systems by those who cannot afford the full investment costs. (ii) Proper market assessments are an essential requirement for projects that rely on the private sector for distribution of equipment, after-sales service, or the operation of local off-grid utilities. (iii) To be sustainable and to realize the potential for expansion in demand, renewable energy technologies (RETs) require established and regulated equipment quality standards to guide purchases, and proper handling and disposal of used SHS batteries. (iv) Regular dialogue and consultation at the appropriate client government level regarding government policy intentions and their consequences are critical to inform project design and implementation.

China: Thermal Power Efficiency Project (PPAR)

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The China Thermal Power Efficiency project sought to reduce coal consumption and greenhouse gas emissions per unit of electricity in three provinces in China – Shanxi, Shandong and Guangdong. The project was conceived as a response to the predominance of coal in China’s energy mix and the need to find ways of improving existing infrastructure over and above weaning the country away from this Show MoreThe China Thermal Power Efficiency project sought to reduce coal consumption and greenhouse gas emissions per unit of electricity in three provinces in China – Shanxi, Shandong and Guangdong. The project was conceived as a response to the predominance of coal in China’s energy mix and the need to find ways of improving existing infrastructure over and above weaning the country away from this reliance as an energy source. China’s rising energy demand had relied heavily on domestic coal production and the rapid expansion of local thermal power generation plants that utilized this coal. Increasingly, these plants were having adverse environmental impacts, particularly in regions experiencing significant increases in energy demand from manufacturing sector. Ratings for the project are as follows: Outcome is satisfactory, Risk to development outcome is moderate, Bank performance is satisfactory, Borrower performance is satisfactory, and Monitoring and Evaluation is satisfactory. Lessons from the project include: (i) Piloting and demonstrating potential technological improvements to lower costs and improve environmental performance works well in environments where operators are risk averse and constrained by government policy. (ii) The World Bank’s international experience and expertise has the capacity to make an important contribution to pollution reduction in the thermal power sector. (iii) External help and international expertise provided by World Bank projects at the provincial level in middle income countries helps support and reinforce successful central government policy. (iii) Analytical work needs to respond to the immediate needs of the sector rather than being determined by supply-side factors. (iv) A ‘hands-off’ approach by the World Bank in high capacity environments can lead to missed opportunities in maximizing a project’s potential. (v) Barriers to the closure of small inefficient power units are often political. Fostering the key relationships with partners is essential in knowing what and how reforms can be implemented in challenging environments.

Guinea CLR Review FY14-17

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This Review of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Completion and Learning Review (CLR) covers the original period of the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Guinea (FY14-FY17) and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) in FY16. Guinea is a low-income country with a GNI per capita of $670 in 2016 and with rich mining and water-based resources. Average annual GDP growth during the 2014-2016 Show MoreThis Review of the World Bank Group’s (WBG) Completion and Learning Review (CLR) covers the original period of the Country Partnership Strategy (CPS) for Guinea (FY14-FY17) and the Performance and Learning Review (PLR) in FY16. Guinea is a low-income country with a GNI per capita of $670 in 2016 and with rich mining and water-based resources. Average annual GDP growth during the 2014-2016 period (4.6 percent) was marginally lower than during the previous four-year period (4.9 percent). Average growth was sustained despite a slowdown resulting from two major shocks: the outbreak of Ebola virus disease in 2014, which reduced international travel, investments, domestic commerce and services; and the decline in aluminum prices, which reduced Guinea’s bauxite ore export prices and revenues. Despite positive per capita growth, social development made little progress. Poverty rates were 53.0 percent in 2007 and 55.2 percent in 2012, the last year of available poverty estimates. Guinea’s Human Development Index remained flat at 0.4 from 2012 to 2015 and placed the country in the low human development category and ranked 183 out of 188 countries in 2015. Rural social conditions are particularly dire, with rural poverty rates much higher (64.7 percent in 2012) than urban rates (35.4 percent).

Local and Regional Pollution Reduction Co-Benefits from Climate Change Mitigation Interventions: A Literature Review

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IEG’s evaluation on pollution and the World Bank Group commissioned a review of the empirical literature on pollution co-benefits from climate change mitigation interventions, emphasizing air pollution benefits. Such pollution is defined using parameters such as sulfur dioxide (SO2), oxides of nitrogen, and particulate matter for air emissions, and total suspended solids for water releases. The Show MoreIEG’s evaluation on pollution and the World Bank Group commissioned a review of the empirical literature on pollution co-benefits from climate change mitigation interventions, emphasizing air pollution benefits. Such pollution is defined using parameters such as sulfur dioxide (SO2), oxides of nitrogen, and particulate matter for air emissions, and total suspended solids for water releases. The review used a multistage identification technique based on 40 keyword strings in Google Scholar, web of science, and Scopus to identify a universe of peer-reviewed articles. Papers were included only if they focused on developing countries. Additional papers were identified iteratively based on references from the initial papers. The final papers cited were based on expert judgment, with emphasis for studies published after 2010. A systematic search was conducted to locate relevant review articles and meta-analyses; no formal systematic reviews were found. Google was also used to identify non-peer-reviewed studies from reputable sources, such as the International Energy Agency, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and World Bank. The paper lays out the methods and models used in calculating pollution co-benefits, and then presents sector-by-sector results for energy, buildings, industry, transportation, solid and liquid waste management, agriculture, forests/other land use, and multiple sector studies.

Bulgaria: District Heating Project (PPAR)

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This Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) prepared by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) evaluates the development effectiveness and sustainability of results of the World Bank–financed District Heating Project in Bulgaria (2003–08). The project development objectives were to improve the quality of district heating services in the capital city of Sofia (1.6 million people) and an Show MoreThis Project Performance Assessment Report (PPAR) prepared by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) evaluates the development effectiveness and sustainability of results of the World Bank–financed District Heating Project in Bulgaria (2003–08). The project development objectives were to improve the quality of district heating services in the capital city of Sofia (1.6 million people) and an adjacent town of Pernik (86,200 people), improve financial viability of the Sofia and Pernik district heating companies, and increase environmentally friendly operations in the district heating sector, through energy conservation and pollution reduction mechanisms. The project also extended funds from the World Bank–administered Prototype Carbon Fund (PCF) for the purchase of carbon emission reductions resulting from the project activities. Ratings for District Heating Project were as follows: Outcome was moderately satisfactory, Risk to development outcome was substantial, Bank performance was moderately satisfactory, and Borrower performance was moderately satisfactory. IEG’s review of this project’s experience in Bulgaria suggests the following lessons: (i) Postponing an energy efficiency project until the necessary legal measures addressing demand-side management are implemented can lead to better outcomes. (ii) Sustainability of benefits from infrastructure investments can be put at risk if future investment needs are unmet. (iii) Investments in energy efficiency infrastructure alone are not enough to achieve sustained financial viability. (iv) Efforts to encourage private sector participation may fail when there is no strong agreement from key stakeholders in the context of a complex and changing governance structure. (v) Carbon finance operation or results-based financing can have strong demonstration effects.

Are Countries Doing Enough to Fight Pollution?

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Are Countries Doing Enough to Fight Pollution
Today, many countries are grappling with endemic or near endemic levels of pollution.Today, many countries are grappling with endemic or near endemic levels of pollution.