Energy Indicators for Sustainable Development
How exactly is our energy profile accessed?
Recently I stumbled on a list of indices that are used to analyze energy profiles of countries. So basically, saying 100 million people do not have access to electricity in Africa is not a vague expression, neither does it mean they these people have never seen a light bulb. Several scientific questions have been asked to come to this conclusion and I am of course unable to cover them all in this short post but at least I can share some interesting ones, So here we go.
Energy indices you might want to know understand:
The indicators were divided into three dimensions, which highlight social, environmental and economic aspects of human life. They are 30 indicators altogether
How do these indicators function? I will run through a few examples.
SOC1, poses the question, what is the share of the population with no access to electricity or heavily dependent on fossil fuels? SOC2, What is the share of household income spent on fuel and electricity? This means that two families in different countries may have access to the same amount of electricity but one family spending 10% more of their income might imply that they have less access to energy.
ECO2 addresses the energy use per GDP, ECO4 and ECO5 measure the ratio of reserve to production and the ratio of resources to production respectively. i.e how much of the energy raw material available is being converted to usable energy?
ENV1 measure amount of greenhouse gases from energy production, ENV2 measure the ambient concentration of air pollutants in an urban area while ENV3 measures air pollutant emissions from energy systems. ENV9 and ENV10 focus on radioactive wastes which may not apply to a country that has no nuclear power plants. ENV6 is a valid measure of deforestation, it shows the rate of deforestation attributed to energy use, hence how much is the forest is degraded to provide energy?
These indicators are intensive and yet easy to understand, which of course will aid their ease of us. However, it is highly data dependent which might make it difficult for persons with no access to data.