In Senegal, as elsewhere, rural electrification is critical to poverty reduction. A national electricity scale-up is necessary for meeting the Millennium Development Goals over the next ten years, and one of the priorities is to electrify all health centers and schools. Rapid electrification of rural institutions and households in Senegal likely will require coordination across sectors and a range of energy technologies, including decentralized solutions.
The Columbia Earth Institute has developed a comprehensive energy planning methodology using straightforward Excel- and GIS-based tools. The toolset based on this methodology allows country teams to make investment estimates for a range of electrification scenarios given various technology options, coverage targets, fuel costs, etc. The tools also provide mechanisms for multiple stakeholders to share resources for energy planning. The tools calculate the cost of scaling up electricity distribution. They output costs broken down into various components (e.g. capital, recurring, and replacement) but do not provide a complete financial analysis of the rate of return on particular investment schemes.