Zero Emission Generators (ZE-Gen) aims to advance renewable energy-based alternatives in countries that currently depend on fossil-fuelled generators. ZE-Gen was first launched at COP27 in November 2022.
Reliance on fossil fuel generators comes at a huge financial, environmental and social cost. Viable alternatives do exist but, despite the benefits these offer, the reach of these solutions is extremely limited.
ZE-Gen will enable the replacement of millions of polluting and expensive fossil-fuelled generators by accelerating the transition to renewable energy-based alternatives. It is a collaborative, cross-sector initiative to tackle barriers, accelerate innovation and fund activities to build a thriving, competitive market for alternatives. ZE-Gen has an initial commitment of over £15 million, with the ambition to seed a wider £100 million partnership.
Deploying renewable energy-based alternatives to fossil fuel generators at scale will require cross-sector action. To unlock these alternatives, we will focus on four key areas that will bring stakeholders together from across the sector.
ZE-Gen is seeking additional partnerships to help reach these tipping points. Interested parties are encouraged to reach out for opportunities to partner via email: email@example.com.
Under market intelligence, ZE-Gen seeks to create, convene and disseminate open-source data. While the literature on generators and potential replacements is growing, there are still large gaps in market understanding, in particular the factors that affect local decision making, ways to integrate innovations into existing systems, and understanding of different use cases for generators.
The objective is to support renewable energy-based alternatives and to demonstrate that compelling solutions can compete with fossil-fuelled gensets. While cleaner alternatives do exist, there are insufficient products in the market today, and innovation in the sector remains limited. To help companies find product market fit and demonstrate financial viability, Ze-Gen will fund pilot projects to optimise business models and the design of clean alternatives.
Finance and Investment
A key goal is to increase affordable capital inflows to support the relatively nascent market for renewable energy-based alternatives. The sector will require affordable capital to innovate and refine business models, as well as interventions to help to tackle the issue of poor access to finance options for end customers.
ZE-Gen will draw on the learnings from the off-grid sector, in particular mini-grids and solar home systems, as well as the on-grid sector to design interventions to limit the need for private sector actors to tackle numerous market failures in isolation. ZE-Gen aims to bring together private players that would otherwise act on their own, with the goal being to act as a market facilitator.