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Focus Areas

Clean Energy Technology and Renewables

Promoting climate resilience through collaborative policy and renewable resources

Widespread adoption of renewable energy technologies will help the global community curb climate change acceleration. RTI International is at the forefront of renewable energy implementation and electric sector research both domestically and internationally. In the U.S., we work with federal and state agencies to build energy sector and economy-wide models that help policymakers assess clean energy policies. As the primary implementing partner for international programs such as USAID’s Power Africa Off-grid Project, Papua New Guinea Electrification Partnership Activity, and Energy Secure Philippines, we work extensively in renewable energy development efforts across sub-Saharan Africa and Asia. We have also worked with governments and other stakeholders in Latin America and the Middle East to assess and implement low-cost clean energy technology and energy efficiency solutions for development. Our team of experts implements cutting-edge developments, disseminates best practices, and catalyzes sector-wide advancements. 

Examples of clean energy technology

Clean energy technologies are renewable in nature and offer less environmentally invasive ways to power the global community. Some of the most common examples of clean energy sources include solar, wind, water, geothermal, bioenergy, natural gas, and nuclear power.

The importance of clean energy technology in sustainable development

Clean energy is a critical component to sustainable development throughout the world. Clean energy technology not only improves our quality of life by reducing air and water pollution, but it also mitigates energy dependence by creating renewable resources in local communities. 

Energy Security and Resilience

Overreliance on single fuels contributes to energy insecurity. RTI has a proven track record of supporting countries to diversify their energy sources through planning resilient energy systems and implementing more efficient resource utilization. In Papua New Guinea, the USAID Papua New Guinea Electrification Partnership project supports generation-fuel switching (e.g., diesel and fuel oil to natural gas), connects solar photovoltaic (PV) technologies to reduce power generation costs, and built a GIS platform to show how over 7 million people living across 600 islands can increase their energy resilience through off-grid electrification and stand-alone solar products. In the Philippines, USAID’s Energy Secure Philippines project supports the energy utility to prevent outages through better performance monitoring and cybersecurity measures as well as the least-cost development of renewable infrastructure. In the United Arab Emirates, we developed a screening tool for government city planners to target which buildings in Abu Dhabi should be prioritized for energy efficiency improvements. These approaches increase resiliency, thereby combating energy insecurity before it begins.

Scaling Renewable Energy Technology and Electricity Grid Integration

Our team works with energy utilities and ministries across sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, and Southeast Asia to increase renewable energy as a proportion of a country’s generation mix, as well as integrating it into their national electricity grids. This support involves evaluating least cost options, addressing renewable energy grid integration challenges and intermittency caps with utility companies, harnessing political initiative within key ministries to advocate for a cleaner generation mix, and unlocking key policy solutions that open the market for renewable energy development. To address intermittency, we also consider clean energy technology solutions (e.g., battery storage) and policy solutions (e.g., incentive programs for generation assets that enhance reliability). RTI manages a $5 million investment fund through the Power Africa Off-grid Project to bring affordable and innovative off-grid energy models to millions of households and businesses across East Africa and to attract private sector investment to the off-grid sector.

Fostering an Enabling Environment for Renewable Energy

Our team understands the nuances of assisting policymakers to enact policies and regulations that attract and empower renewable energy companies. We help partner governments navigate the complexities of setting agreeable product standards, value-added taxes, tariffs, and import duties as well as addressing policy and technical challenges related to renewable energy grid integration and intermittency. In addition, we support practical legislation to mitigate environmental hazards through rigorous research, including the management of electronic waste. This support often extends beyond the energy sector to institutions involved in agriculture, data policy, finance, and public health.

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