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Exploring requirements for sustainable energy supply planning with regard to climate resilience of Southeast Asian islands (Lammers et al.)

Katrin Lammers, Paul Bertheau, Philipp Blechinger

Abstract — Southeast Asia is one of the regions most affected by impacts of climate change underlying the urgency to build resilience especially for remote and isolated island communities. Moreover, these islands face the problem of expensive and unreliable electricity supply. The large number of island communities further magnifies the difficulty of reaching universal sustainable electricity supply. Off-grid electrification technologies promise to tackle this challenge entailing high investments yet also market potential. Currently both aspects – electricity access and climate resilience - are barely linked in electrification planning. Energy planning in a region highly affected by climate change requires integrative planning considering these risks. Here, to enhance integrative planning, we study the status quo of energy access and risk exposure of non-electrified Southeast Asian islands. We identify 1,932 islands with a population greater than 21 million having limited access to electricity. Our study reveals three risk-specific island archetypes, which need different technical measures to enhance climate resiliency of future electricity systems. We conclude that future energy planning in Southeast Asia requires climate resilience as an additional planning dimension. The identified cluster groups serve as a blueprint for decision makers to support measures improving energy systems’ resilience avoiding expensive re-investments in the future.

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Paper published in: Energy Policy, Volume 146, November 2020, 111770.