Improving Energy Efficiency in South Asia
Wijayatunga, Priyantha; Siyambalapitiya, Tilak | October 2016
Energy efficiency is considered to be the fastest way to bring additional energy to meet the increasing demand for energy services. Energy efficiency has gained attention in various parts of the world since the 1970s. Contrary to the belief among policy makers that the economic output might suffer due to energy efficiency interventions, it has been shown that higher energy efficiency improves total factor productivity. With an appropriate combination of market instruments and regulations in areas where markets tend to fail, energy efficiency interventions can be successfully implemented. In South Asia, on the supply side of the power systems, the key energy efficiency issues are (i) the relatively lower efficiency and reliability of thermal power plants, and (ii) the significantly high losses in electricity transmission and delivery systems. On the demand side, opportunities for demand management and conservation are many. There is scope for significant improvement in coal-fired power plant efficiency improvements (2–4 percentage points) and loss reduction in transmission and distribution systems. Indirect demand control mechanisms such as time-of-use electricity tariffs and introduction of appliance standards have been used in South Asia for some time, and they can be enhanced and expanded. Similarly, direct load control through smart metering can also play an important role, with increasing attention now being paid to employment of smart grids in the region. This paper concludes that South Asia has a significant potential for energy efficiency improvement in the power sector. These efficiency improvements can be realized with appropriate policies and programs that can be readily implemented with the existing institutional framework.
CitationWijayatunga, Priyantha; Siyambalapitiya, Tilak. 2016. Improving Energy Efficiency in South Asia. © Asian Development Bank. http://hdl.handle.net/11540/7602. License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.
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