The Future of Emerging Economies' Energy Mix : Lessons from Mauritius
"One of the least understood but potentially important trends in the energy field is the way in which the development priorities of small developing islands and emerging economies are shaping energy markets. Given that climate change is likely to influence the energy policies and investment of many countries, does the solution lie in the development and deployment of renewable energy? This brief contends that a future energy-mix landscape for Mauritius is key, and should underpin the policy direction of the island. Like most small island developing states (SIDS) with no indigenous reserves of fossil fuels, and no electricity interconnection, Mauritius is vulnerable to the risk of being without power and transport in the event of geo-political, economic or natural crisis. It is striking to note that the Mauritian government, through its Central Electricity Board (CEB), has developed an integrated electricity plan (IEP) that strives to balance the supply and demand of electricity for the next decade. The island remains a unique case in that it has reached consensus with its private sector to make better use of bagasse, leading to the genesis of independent power producers such as Terragen and Omnicane with co-generation plants (bagasse and coal), supplying to the grid about 60 per cent of the national electricity demand. The total percentage share of energy sources is projected to range from 20 to 35 per cent between 2010 and 2025, while the use of non-renewable fuels, in particular coal and oil, should range between 65 and 80 per cent over the same period. This brief contends that policy development to ensure energy security should ensure diversification of energy resources to attain a sustainable future."