“Finance for electricity and clean cooking remains dramatically short of what is needed to meet SDG7 and deliver universal access on time. Concessional development finance for electricity access declines by 7%. Sub-Saharan Africa, with an already low share of commitments, is falling even further behind.” These are just some of the discouraging findings that emerged from the latest Energizing Finance report, published in November 2018 by Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) in partnership with the Climate Policy Initiative.
With just under 1 billion people still lacking access to electricity and 3 billion without access to clean cooking alternatives, it is crucial that this reality check is heard by donors and recipient governments, development finance communities, investors and private sector companies aiming to mobilize greater funds to ensure clean energy access for all. As concerted international policy and finance responses to achieve the SDGs evolve, strengthen and gain momentum, so must the systems for tracking progress toward the goals.
However, during our research for Energizing Finance, we found that multiple working definitions, metrics and indicators are being used to measure progress towards energy access goals, differing from institution to institution.
To this end, a well-calibrated, consistent and credible measurement and evaluation system, and a common set of definitions specifically targeted to track progress towards SDG7 (and other SDGs as well) is warranted.