Integrated Energy Planning (2015–2016)

Growing demand for energy goes hand-in-hand with rapid economic development. Since 2005, GDP per capita in the GMS has increased 260% while electricity consumption has nearly doubled. As their economies continue to rapidly grow, all six countries need to utilize additional energy resources to meet increasing domestic demand.  In addition, Lao PDR and Myanmar view energy exports as a major economic opportunity. 

However, while energy development is a positive for economic growth, if poorly planned it can have immense environmental and social impacts.  For example: land degradation from coal extraction; greenhouse gas emissions from coal powered plants; community resettlement, water security and threats to fisheries from hydropower.  It can also have major political ramifications, such as the current controversy and disputes over hydropower development on the Mekong River.

To minimize such threats, energy planning in the GMS needs to be carefully managed. Most importantly, it must employ an integrated planning approach that involves a broad range of stakeholders and uses the right tools to properly assess environmental, economic, and social implications.

In Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Myanmar, energy planning remains relatively weak. A major issue is that their energy ministries lack the institutional and technical capacity to follow best planning practice. This is compounded by a lack of coordination with other ministries – such as environment – to share information and plan together, vital for ensuring development is sustainable.

Under this activity, CEP aims to build the capacity of energy and environment ministries in Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Myanmar to use integrated energy planning approaches and tools. 
Major tasks include:

  •  Awareness-raising workshops on integrated energy planning for senior energy and environment officials.
  • Technical capacity building workshops for ministry planning officials  on specific approaches and tools for integrated energy planning, such as Strategic Environmental Assessment, spatial multicriteria assessment, and Long-range Energy Alternatives Planning System.
  • Mentoring of energy and environment officials to apply integrated energy planning approaches and tools in their respective countries.
  • Develop national guidelines for integrated energy planning.

Publish Date: 22nd August 2014

Last Updated: 15th November 2015

See also

Improving Land Use Planning in the Greater Mekong Subregion

31st March 2018

Land use is constantly changing in the GMS. Yet government planners are often poorly informed on land use processes, which risks decisions being made that may lead to social and environmental costs that outweigh the intended benefits. For example, a forest cleared for timber or commercial plantations might, due to poor land use planning, affect water and soil quality and negatively impact nearby agriculture.

More details

Building Environmental Impact Assessment Capacity in Cambodia

31st March 2018

When Chea Leng learned about environmental impact assessment (EIA) in the mid-1990s it was a concept few in Cambodia knew much about. Two decades on, the country’s attempts to mainstream EIA have met with mixed results. But Leng, who is the deputy director of the Ministry of Environment’s Environmental Impact Assessment Department, believes that is soon going to change.

More details
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