The Powering Agriculture: An Energy Grand Challenge for Development (PAEGC) has created a FAQ sheet to help media and press engage with PAEGC and its innovators.
- Who are the PAEGC Founding Partners and how are they contributing?
- What is the overall goal of PAEGC and what are the desired impacts?
- Why was PAEGC created?
- How does PAEGC support the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development?
- Who are the PAEGC Innovators?
- What are the considerations for selecting PAEGC Innovators and who selects them?
- When did companies first apply for PAEGC and how many applied?
- What additional support does PAEGC offer Innovators beyond grant funding?
Who are the PAEGC Founding Partners and how are they contributing?
In 2012, The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Government of Sweden (SIDA), the Government of Germany (BMZ), Duke Energy Corporation and the United States Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) combined resources to create the PAEGC initiative.
The Founding Partners have collectively pledged $53.3 million to the entire PAEGC initiative in the form of cash and in-kind contributions. Under PAEGC’s first and second Global Calls for Innovations in 2012 and 2014, the Founding Partners have provided over $30 million of funding and technical resources to a cohort of Innovators.
What is the overall goal of PAEGC and what are the desired impacts?
The goal of PAEGC is to support new and sustainable approaches to accelerate the development and deployment of clean energy solutions for increasing agriculture productivity and/or value in developing countries. catalyze progress towards this goal, PAEGC provides funding and support to commercialize clean energy technologies and innovative business models that are designed to:
- Enhance agricultural yields/productivity;
- Decrease post-harvest losses;
- Improve farmer and agribusiness income generating opportunities and revenues;
- Increase energy efficiency within the operations of farms and agribusinesses.
Why was PAEGC created?
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization projects that by 2050 global food production will need to increase 70 percent over 2005–2007 levels to meet the demand of a growing world population expected to reach 9.6 billion people. There is a growing concern that significant agricultural intensification will result in an even greater demand for fossil fuels worldwide. Such a path could hinder efforts to end extreme poverty, contribute to greater food insecurity, and lead to a prominent increase in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions within the agricultural sector.
PAEGC was created to address the aforementioned concerns by using a clean energy/agriculture nexus approach to support innovations that can provide access to reliable, affordable and clean energy to farmers and agribusinesses in developing countries. The lack of access to clean energy limits the ability of many farmers and agribusinesses to adopt modern agricultural practices, increase food production, improve efficiency of their operations and benefit from broad-based, low-carbon economic growth.
How does PAEGC support the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development?
Powering Agriculture contributes to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by supporting the following goals: SDG 1 (No Poverty), SDG 2 (Zero Hunger/Sustainable Agriculture), SDG 5 (Gender Equality), SDG 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy), SDG 8 (Economic Growth), SDG 9 (Innovation), SDG 13 (Climate Action), and SDG 17 (Partnerships for the Goals).
Who are the PAEGC Innovators?
PAEGC has 24 Innovators within its 2013 and 2015 cohorts that work in 23 countries around the world. These innovators are dynamic organizations that are accelerating the development and deployment of clean energy solutions at the household, farm, village, cooperative and industrial facility level. PAEGC’s Innovators are developing and implementing groundbreaking technologies and business models that include:
- Solar Irrigation
- Cooling & Cold Storage Refrigeration
- Decentralized Power/Minigrids
- Energy Efficient Value Added Processing/Mechanization
- Solar Thermal Aeration
These clean energy solutions being developed and implemented by the PAEGC Innovators will enhance agricultural yields/productivity, decrease post-harvest loss, improve farmer and agribusiness income generating opportunities and revenues, and/or increase energy efficiency and associated savings within the operations of farms and agribusinesses all while stimulating low carbon economic growth within the agriculture sector of developing countries. Go to poweringag.org/innovators for more detailed Innovator profiles.
What are the considerations for selecting PAEGC Innovators and who selects them?
PAEGC seeks to fund solutions within the clean energy-agriculture nexus that:
- Can achieve scale;
- Are adoptable within the context of emerging markets;
- Reduce gender disparities in access to, control over and benefit from clean energy resources
- Are sustainable, and can ultimately progress without outside assistance;
- Utilize modern, evidence-based science and technology approaches.
The composition of the Technical Evaluation Committee (TEC) and Innovator Evaluation Board (IEB) has included members from USAID, SIDA, GIZ, OPIC, Duke Energy, technical experts, business specialists, sustainable development experts and researchers.
When did companies first apply for PAEGC and how many applied?
To date, PAEGC has released two Global Calls for Innovations (GIC) in December 2012 and November 2014. The first global call for innovations (GIC-1) received 473 applications and the second global call for innovations (GIC-2) received 871 applications.
What additional support does PAEGC offer Innovators beyond grant funding?
PAEGC Innovators have the option to work with the Powering Agriculture Xcelerator (PAX) Program to create a work-plan that identifies relevant and specific services from the acceleration support program. While all acceleration support will be needs-based and tailored to the innovator, the PAX Program offers three broad sub-programs:
PAX provides access to prequalified firms and consultants who can provide the services identified in the innovators’ acceleration work-plan. These services may include access to technology and engineering, pricing, human resource management, marketing, IT, legal, procurement, supply chain, manufacturing and distribution experts and business model innovation advisory services.
PAX facilitates additional investment support through services that include:
PAX helps prepare innovators to successfully attract capital partners. Innovators may participate in investment workshops with successful entrepreneurs, investors, other capital providers and lawyers to help them analyze their growth strategy and determine capital requirements. In addition, the workshops help innovators develop their pitches and prepare for questions from potential investors.
PAX brings together investors and select innovators for structured pitch presentations. Grant, debt and equity capital providers will be invited, depending on the needs of the innovators.
PAX integrates feedback from the investors’ circles into the acceleration work plan and support the innovators to address identified challenges and prepare for future rounds of investment pitches. PAX also tracks potential interest from the investors and support the innovators to respond and follow-up during diligence and negotiation process.
Market Partnership Facilitation
PAX facilitates market linkages and helps build partnerships through services that include:
Sales and Business Development
PAX provides access to advisors and builds capacity around sales and new business development.
PAX works with awardees, and prequalified firms and consultants to support the creation of partnerships with manufacturers, distributors and other B2B partners, donors, civil society organizations, local governments, etc. to facilitate uptake of the innovation and thereby growth of the business
PAX facilitates winning innovators’ participation at international conferences (e.g. trade shows, technology fairs).