Central Asian countries have committed to accelerating the uptake of renewable energy in the region.
Led by Kazakhstan and including Azerbaijan and Kyrgyzstan, the nations have joined with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) to capitalise on their substantial potential for green generation.
They have agreed it could provide a solution to the shared issues of rising electricity demand, ageing power infrastructure, limited energy access and the impacts of climate change.
In a jointly published communique, the nations and IRENA identified six key collaboration areas to help diversify and decarbonise the region’s energy mix.
These include resource assessments, integrating variable renewable energy into power grids, policies and regulations for clean energy deployment, collecting renewable energy statistics, helping facilitate new projects and raising awareness.
IRENA will also work closely with business stakeholders to support ongoing work to advance renewable energy development in Central Asia.
The region has installed 500MW of new non-hydro renewable power capacity over the last two years but many remote areas still lack reliable power and heating.
IRENA Director-General, Adnan Z. Amin, said: “Covering over four million square kilometers, the countries of Central Asia are endowed with rich renewable energy sources that can drive sustainable economic development and growth.
“With renewable energy targets in place for 2020 and beyond, the region can now seize this transformative opportunity for a sustainable energy future and the new Action Plan will help boost efforts of renewable energy uptake.”