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Identifying and addressing drivers and barriers to renewable energy development in the rural electrification of Mongolia

Tamir, Khishigt (2011) Identifying and addressing drivers and barriers to renewable energy development in the rural electrification of Mongolia. Masters by Coursework thesis, Murdoch University.

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    Abstract

    Historically, in rural areas of many countries, diesel generators have been used as a centralized power supply option at the centre of small villages. The viability of this option depends on many factors which are different in each country’s specific situation. However, there are some problems that can be common despite their different situations. For example, a difficulty in transporting diesel fuel to remote rural areas is common and can be often impossible due to bad weather conditions. High transportation costs for diesel fuel and the high price of diesel fuel itself are also similar for many countries. Insufficient maintenance and periodic major overhaul of diesel generators is commonly due to lack of qualified people or supervisory organization and the low level of power tariffs. People living in remote rural areas have low income and so their ability to pay is low. On the contrary, the price of diesel fuel increases consistently and many countries have to import diesel fuel from other countries. Thus, for some countries nowadays, a centralized power supply solution using a diesel generator, is not a promising solution for rural areas. Alternative solutions have been sought by governments of many countries, focusing on utilizing renewable energy as an option for power supply in remote rural areas.

    Renewable energy has been utilized widely in rural areas of many countries however, only in small-scale systems for individual households or single organizations but not often as a large centralized power supply at the centre of villages where the magnitude and change of load are significant. Although, renewable energy systems have less operating costs than diesel generators, their initial capital cost is high and their technology requires a different strategy for ensuring their sustainable functioning in rural areas. There are many technical and nontechnical issues that need to be considered.

    Sustainability of renewable energy systems in rural areas depends on success in each stage of implementation of a project, and various drivers and barriers exist in renewable energy utilization for rural electrification. The Government of Mongolia had financed implementation of 12 projects for installation and operation of the centralized type of renewable energy systems at the centre of remote rural soums (villages) between 2007 and 2008.

    In this dissertation, drivers and barriers to renewable energy development in the rural electrification of Mongolia were identified and addressed, based on real facts in installation and operation of 12 large-sized renewable energy systems in rural areas of Mongolia. Information about similar types of projects implemented elsewhere is not abundant that cannot Identifying and addressing drivers and barriers to renewable energy development in the rural electrification of Mongolia be referenced as real-life examples. There is no simple guide to considering all related issues for implementation of large-sized, centralized-type of renewable energy systems intended to be installed in the centre of rural villages. Most of the issues identified in this dissertation can be similar for many countries, despite the specific circumstances of each country.

    Publication Type: Thesis (Masters by Coursework)
    Murdoch Affiliation: School of Engineering and Energy
    Supervisor: Pryor, Trevor and Urmee, Tania
    URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/11024
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