Solutions Center assistance will help Mauritius and Seychelles achieve greater solar water heating market penetration. Shown here: City of Port Louis, Mauritius.
In response to separate requests for assistance from the republics of Mauritius and Seychelles, the Clean Energy Solutions Center worked with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) through the Renewable Energy Policy Advice Network (REPAN) to conduct solar water heating market studies for both countries. The studies were designed to support efforts by Mauritius and Seychelles to develop to develop, strengthen, and accelerate the growth of the solar water heating (SWH) sector. Small island development states like Mauritius and Seychelles face unique energy challenges, as costly fossil fuel imports burden their national budgets and inhibit investment in socio-economic development. Indigenous renewable energy resources such as solar can reduce import dependence, while creating important local business and employment opportunities. Solar water heating systems can be highly cost effective in island settings with high fuel prices.
To benchmark and evaluate solar water heating markets in both countries, REPAN experts used the Solar Water Heating TechScope Market Readiness Assessment methodology, which was developed under the Global Solar Water Heating Market Transformation and Strengthening Initiative—a joint undertaking by the United Nations Environment Programme and the United Nations Development Program. The goal of the initiative is to develop, strengthen and accelerate the growth of the solar water heating sector.
The Mauritius study indicated that the country’s solar water heating market is strong, with average annual growth of 40% over the past five years and 25 percent of households equipped with solar water heaters. Mauritius has also laid much of the non-financial groundwork needed to continue developing the solar water heating market, including government-led public awareness campaigns, installer quality requirements, and incentive schemes to jumpstart early-stage market growth. The country also enjoys an increasing number of available financing mechanisms and a high degree of public awareness.
Unlike Mauritius, Seychelles is almost entirely dependent on imported fossil fuels. The Solar Water Heating TechScope Market Readiness Assessment for Seychelles indicated an average growth in the country’s solar thermal market of about 17% annually over the last five years, along with a strong loan program available to households for purchasing energy efficiency and renewable energy equipment, including home appliances, solar PV, and solar water heating.
Impact of Assistance
Information provided by the Solutions Center’s solar water heating assessments for Mauritius and Seychelles will help the countries’ decision makers develop strategies to expand solar water heating markets, reduce dependence on imported fossil fuels, and create important local business and employment opportunities.
By establishing solar water heating market targets, financial incentives for system installation, building mandates and outreach campaigns, Seychelles can achieve greater solar water heating market penetration.
By establishing solar water heating policies and incentives and continuing to build its solar water heating standards and certification infrastructure, the country can achieve much greater solar water heating market penetration