DETERMINING THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTORS FOR SUSTAINABLE ENERGY TECHNOLOGY SELECTION IN AFRICA

M L Barry, Herman Steyn, Alan C Brent

The supply of sustainable energy is crucial for sustainable development in Africa. The aim of the study summarised in this paper is the identification, and prioritisation, of the factors that must be taken into account when selecting the most sustainable technological systems in the African context, by applying the Delphi technique. The questionnaire of the first round was based on factors already identified during a focus group exercise with energy experts. The Delphi participants were required to comment on the factors, add new factors, and rate all the factors. The results were fed back during the second round where respondents were again asked to rate the factors for feasibility, desirability, and importance. The outcome is the identification of the most important factors that can be used by decision makers to ensure better selection of sustainable energy technologies and projects. The top five prioritised factors are: Ease of maintenance and support over the lifecycle of the technology; Suitable site readily available for pilot studies; Project management; Economic development; and Access to secured suitable sites for deployment.

Full paper: http://sajie.journals.ac.za/pub/article/view/758