At the current rate of progress, only eight countries in Sub-Saharan Africa will achieve universal electricity access by 2030. Decentralized renewable energy is the fastest and cost-effective way to bring power to rural and most vulnerable settings. At this event, policy makers and develop partners will discuss the implementation of the World Bank Group’s new Distributed Access through Renewable Energy Scale-up (DARES) program which aims to help African countries double the pace of access expansion by 2026.
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, Government of Uganda
Before that, she was the chairperson of the Uganda Refinery Holding Company (URHC), a subsidiary company of the Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC). When the Uganda Oil Refinery is built, URHC will own the shareholding that the government of Uganda will acquire in the joint venture.
Irene Bateebe, a board member of the UNOC, also served as the Principal Refining Engineer in the Uganda Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, since February 2009. She is responsible for ensuring that the machinery and equipment imported into the country to build the Uganda Oil Refinery and Uganda–Tanzania Crude Oil Pipeline meet standards and specifications. Bateebe is one of the most senior engineers in the Energy ministry. She often accompanies the president of Uganda and or the Minister of Energy on international trips concerning the proposed oil refinery and crude oil pipeline. She is the government technocrat whose primary responsibility is building the oil refinery, the crude oil pipelines and petroleum products pipeline.
Gabriela Elizondo Azuela
Practice Manager, ESMAP, The World Bank
Gabriela Elizondo Azuela is Practice Manager of the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP) at the World Bank In this role, she oversees a global portfolio of analytical and advisory activities in the energy sector, as well as the Bank’s energy climate finance operations. Ms. Elizondo-Azuela, a Mexican national, joined the Bank in 2003.
Prior to assuming her current position at ESMAP, Ms. Elizondo-Azuela worked in the Latin America and Caribbean Energy Unit and other various Energy units across regional and global teams, contributing to a range of innovative operations in the areas of energy access, clean energy, climate change and became the Global Lead for Clean Energy for the Global Practice. As the Global Lead, she has championed the introduction of innovative initiatives, most recently in the areas of digitalization of energy sector infrastructure and utilities of the future. Ms. Elizondo-Azuela has more than 25 years of professional experience in the environmental and energy fields with specializations in power sector reform, regulatory design, private sector development, power sector planning, renewable energy, and climate change.
Before joining the Bank, she worked for private consulting firms and academia. Ms. Elizondo-Azuela is a graduate of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (MX) in Chemical Engineering, has a Master of Environmental/Water Resources Engineering degree from the University of Michigan (USA), a PhD of Energy Economics from Imperial College London (UK), and various postgraduate diplomas from Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA).
Managing Director for country Delivery, Global Energy Alliance for People and the Planet (GEAPP)
Edward is the Managing Director, Country Delivery of GEAPP since September 2022. He worked before at the Rockefeller Foundation and is a former director at RMI. Prior to joining RMI, Edward founded and led an energy consultancy cooperative in Brazil, which has become a leading regional advisor on energy efficiency and distributed generation for governments and major organizations.
Previous work included developing national energy efficiency action plans in industry and buildings; founding a program to develop building energy benchmarks; and launching an efficient cities initiative in Brazil. He has also led teams auditing or commissioning dozens of large buildings and industries. Earlier in his career, Edward helped launch an innovative green building business in London, where he developed award-winning domestic efficiency solutions and built the UK’s first Passivhaus retrofits.
Executive Director, GOGLA
Koen Peters has been GOGLA's Executive Director since 2014. He has more than 20 years of international work experience, of which more than 12 years in relation to energy access. He gathered insights from many different perspectives and organizations, including government, consulting, start-up businesses, and international finance organizations.
Prior to joining GOGLA, Koen worked as renewable energy expert within the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In this capacity, he focused on development assistance programmes promoting access to energy in Africa – with a specific focus on private sector cooperation and development finance instruments. Here he worked with the leading international development finance organizations, donor governments, and international NGOs active in the field of sustainable energy in developing countries.
Earlier, he worked for about ten years as a consultant, supporting start-up businesses with business planning, project management, and fundraising – in particular in relation to energy access business initiatives in developing countries. During this period he co-founded and co-managed a solar PV company in Tanzania – then (in 2001-2006) the first company to focus mainly on providing solar energy solutions to poor people in rural communities. He was also project manager of one of the first projects aimed at solar mobile phone charging solutions, in Uganda.
His experience in the private sector came after several years in the public sector: for the Dutch government on international cooperation; for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development on donor cooperation on international climate investments; and for the British Department for International Development.
Koen has a Master's degree in Environmental Engineering from Wageningen University and a Master's in Business Administration jointly from Nyenrode University and Kellogg School of Management. He is married and has two children.
Senior Advisor, FDCO, Government of UK
At DFID, now the FCDO, Steven has worked on policy, including leading the UK’s position on the energy SDG process, the development of Results-Based Financing for Low Carbon Energy Access (RBF) and Green Mini-Grids Africa. He acted as a senior advisor in the development of the Energy Africa campaign, supporting household solar market acceleration in Africa.
He is currently co-leading the Ayrton Fund for clean energy innovation, and overseeing the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) Platform. Steven is co-chair of the Mini-Grids Funders Group, and until recently was co-chair of the Efficiency for Access Coalition. He has been working on clean energy access issues for more than 15 years, including six years at Practical Action Consulting, where he led the team who produced the first Poor People’s Energy Outlook.
Steven started his career in product development consultancy at The Technology Partnership. He has degrees in engineering and design from Glasgow, Groningen and Cambridge.