Consultancy: Renewable Energy Expert

Title: Consultancy: Renewable Energy Expert
Organisation: UNDP
Location: Sao Tome, Sao Tome and Principe
Languages required: English, French, Portuguese
Application deadline: 17 October 2013
Start date: 1 November 2013
Duration of initial contract: 50 days: Home based with travel to São Tomé and Principe
Website/full details: Consultancy: Renewable Energy Expert

Description: Africa remains the region with the lowest ratio of hydroelectric deployment-to-potential, and the opportunities for growth are very large across the continent. However in Africa – and particularly in African SIDS – complicated competing priorities and unique vulnerabilities mean that hydropower development is not always straightforward. Significant planning, consultation, safeguards and incentives are required for hydropower development, especially in SIDS with fragile forest ecosystems. In addition, the unique combination of inaccessibility and relatively small populations exposes SIDS in the region to the enduring challenges that arise from lack of economies of scale, high oil prices, high transportation and communication costs, expensive public administration and infrastructure, and lack of skilled human capital. Thus the transformation of the energy sector in SIDS to an economically viable and environmentally friendly system requires a comprehensive and multi-faceted approach in the design of the appropriate policy and planning frameworks and incentives to fully integrate RE technologies in way that is climate resilient and minimizes negative impacts on ecosystems.

Sao Tome and Principe urgently requires investments and incentives for the sustainable development and deployment of its hydropower potential to meet its growing energy gap. The country’s water resources are highly vulnerable to climate change which impacts the already weak management of the country’s forest resources and watersheds, as well as its hydropower potential. The development of this new hydropower potential must therefore be integrated with an approach to land-use planning and sustainable land and forestry management practices that is: 1) climate-resilient; 2) mitigates degradation of water resources in surface and groundwater basins;  and 3) preserves the integrity of the country’s riparian forests. At present the country has to cover the gap in terms of technical and administrative capacities and create an enabling environment that will promote a conducive atmosphere for an integrated approach to climate change adaptation and mitigation in the Island.

The UNDP/GEF Project Identification Form (PIF) “Promotion of environmentally sustainable and climate-resilient grid-based hydroelectric electricity through an integrated approach in Sao Tome and Principe” is a multi-focal area project (drawing on funds from climate change mitigation, land degradation and sustainable forest management allocations) that is designed to introduce an integrated energy and ecosystems-based approach to grid-based hydroelectric electricity generation in Sao Tome and Principe. The project has three components. The first component seeks to remove the underlying barriers that have prevented a market transformation of the sub-sector by developing a streamlined and comprehensive market-oriented energy policy and legal/regulatory framework for on-grid, mini-hydro electricity generation by Independent Power Producers (IPPs) while the second component is focused on promoting investment in mini-hydro through appropriate catalytic financial incentives for investors (the proposed mechanism is the establishment of a renewable energy guarantee scheme). The third component is focused on watershed and sustainable forestry management and implementation. This consultancy focuses mainly on the first and second component only as provision will be made available for aspects regarding sustainable land and forest management through a parallel and complementary study.

The project seeks to promote investment in mini-hydro through appropriate catalytic financial incentives for project investors. To do so, the project will establish first, the needed policy, institutional, legal and regulatory framework for climate-resilient on-grid mini-hydro, and then, ensure regular water flows through proper watershed and sustainable forestry management. The project is innovative, by integrating energy and ecosystems-based approach, to ensure that land use and climate change considerations are specifically incorporated into the legal/regulatory framework for on-grid mini-hydro. The project will lead to a market transformation of the energy sector by developing a streamlined and comprehensive market-oriented energy policy and legal/regulatory framework for on-grid, mini-hydro electricity generation by Independent Power Producers (IPPs), through activities that are a prerequisite for on-grid investments (technical report on grid capacity requirements, establishing a transparent procurement mechanism for selection of IPPs and off-take arrangements, standardization of PPAs, etc.). The project aims to put in place a Renewable Energy Guarantee Scheme (REGS). This would be a type of partial risk guarantee that would cover IPPs against the risk of a public entity not fulfilling its obligations with respect to the off-take agreements in the PPAs. An installed capacity of 4 MW of on-grid generation from mini-hydro IPPs will be launched. The project will also put in place an institutional planning and interventions for watershed management; an institutional framework for sustainable land and forest management governance; and a framework for re-investment of energy proceeds into community conservation.

Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work: 

The GEF project cycle includes a preparatory phase, which follows the approval of the PIF and foresees the collection of information and gathering of useful data for project design; the validation of the indicative outcomes and outputs contained in the PIF; the development of a full M&E plan including appropriate indicators and baseline; and the development of a participatory plan to involve communities and government stakeholders as well as  agree on implementation arrangements and co-financing.

A Project Preparation Grant (PPG) for this project has been approved by the GEF Secretariat to prepare a Full-Size Project Document (FSP), based on the approved project proposal concept (PIF).  The PPG phase will support various data collection efforts and undertake several stakeholder consultations with the view to further develop the approved project concept into a fully formulated project document.  The final output of the PPG phase will be a UNDP-GEF project document and GEF CEO endorsement template ready for submission to UNDP and GEF, with all required supporting annexes, tracking tools and background information.

The PPG phase will include four interrelated components:

Technical review and project design

  • Collection of baseline information, identifying and filling key gaps in information to strengthen the project design;   
  • Preparation of studies to address any opportunities/risks identified during an environmental and social screening of the project proposal;
  • Identification of specific sites for intervention;
  • Integration of the project with relevant development plans, policies, budgets and complementary projects; and
  • Completion of the GEF Climate Change Mitigation and Land Degradation tracking tools, together with a detailed analysis of the project’s direct and indirect contribution to the stated GHG emission reduction targets.

Institutional arrangements, monitoring and evaluation

  • Finalization of project results framework:  Definition of the results framework with appropriate objective-level and outcome-level quantitative and qualitative SMART indicators, and end-of-project targets.  Special attention will be paid  to include socio-economic and sex disaggregated indicators;
  • Definition of monitoring and evaluation (M&E):  A detailed M&E work plan will be developed, including clear identification of responsibilities and accountabilities, as well as an appropriate M&E budget;
  • Definition of a sustainability plan:  The sustainability plan will outline the principles and guidelines for ensuring the long-term sustainability of project achievements. It will also outline an exit strategy, seeking the continuation of key activities/achievements without the need of long-term international financing; and
  • Definition of management arrangements.

Financial planning and co-financing investments

  • Preparation of a detailed multi-year budget following the standard template provided in the UNDP-GEF project document template that reflects the mandatory requirements of the GEF M&E Policy;
  • Confirmation of relevant multilateral and bilateral co-financing opportunities; and
  • Completion of all required official endorsement letters from project partners.

Validation workshop

  • A PPG validation workshop will be held to gather representatives from all relevant stakeholders to present, discuss and validate the final draft project document.
  • The PPG phase will include extensive stakeholder consultations with government entities, private sector entities, industry groups, donors and civil society organizations as part of the above-mentioned activities.

Description of Responsibilities:

In approximately 50 days of total work throughout the duration of the PPG process (various tasks are expected to be done concurrently), the overall purpose of the consultancy is the preparation of a UNDP/GEF compliant full sized project. The consultant will be expected to provide lead quality assurance as regards all activities under the project related to hydropower and climate change mitigation. The consultant will be the leader of a team gathering several local consultants and an international consultant working on sustainable forest management. More specifically the consultant is expected to:

GEF Project Formulation

  • Control quality of inputs and outputs of all consultants and subcontractors;
  • Mainstream project’s problems and barriers analysis among the project planning team;
  • Help determine the project’s system boundaries and scope;
  • Facilitate the Logical framework analysis workshop;
  • Help in the coordination of financial mechanisms and other institutional work;
  • Investigate potential options for the project’s institutional and implementation arrangements;
  • Provide detailed information on the proposed activities;
  • Evaluate the CO2 emission savings;
  • Develop the project’s replication and sustainability;
  • Develop the project’s sustainability strategy;
  • Demonstrate cost-effectiveness of the project’s interventions;
  • Clarify the additionality of the proposed outcomes and activities, and ensure that the project approach is the most cost-effective according to GEF guidelines;
  • Facilitate the process of confirming the co-funding and co-financing plan;
  • Stimulate partnerships and help mobilize resources;
  • Facilitate consultations with all relevant stakeholders with regards to the proposal, including detailed budget, detailed TORs for all project staff, and a detailed activity and work plan, in line with GEF eligibility principles;
  • Develop a detailed M&E work plan for all activities funded by climate change mitigation allocation, including clear identification of responsibilities and accountabilities, as well as an appropriate M&E budget. The plan will be based on the standard template provided in the UNDP-GEF project document template that reflects the mandatory requirements of the GEF M&E Policy;
  • Finalize the project results framework as regards all activities funded by climate change mitigation allocation.  Further define the results framework with appropriate objective-level and outcome-level quantitative and qualitative SMART2 indicators, and end-of-project targets. Ensure that all energy related activities are in conformance with GEF V focal area guidelines and indicators. Special attention should be paid to include socio-economic and sex disaggregated indicators;
  • Develop the Project Document and CEO Endorsement Request, and Tracking Tools;
  • Address all comments on the project design by the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel and in the GEF review sheet.

Renewable Energy investment (Mini-hydropower)

Provide detailed analysis of planned investments in on-grid mini hydroelectricity (including financial and fiscal instruments, socio-economic interests and value chain analysis):

  • Develop financial mechanisms tools, other institutional work; and demonstrate their potential sustainability and their incrementality compared to the marketing practices in place, as well as that these financial mechanisms are in line with UNDP comparative advantage (REGS, PPA, etc.);
  • Analyze the country gathered data on mini hydropower resource and propose suitable and adaptive technologies;
  • Control quality of inputs and outputs of national consultant on energy.