Renewable energy has become the alternative energy source to replace fossil fuels. Properly implemented renewable energy technologies not only are able to reduce the negative impacts of climate change, but also contribute to social and economic development, energy accessibility, and more secure energy supply. Nowadays, several countries in the Arab region are among the global frontrunners in clean energy deployment. These countries recognize the socio-economic benefits of renewable energy deployment, which is perceived as an opportunity for economic diversification, new value-chain activities, and technology transfer.
Indeed, any energy transition cannot be considered in isolation from the socio-economic system in which it is deployed. The close linkages between the energy sector and the socioeconomic system impacts the socio-economic footprint and generates several benefits in terms of GDP growth, employment, and human wellbeing. The impacts on specific economies may differ from a country to another based on national willingness, the current economic outputs, the physical geography, and natural resources of a country. Different countries are addressing the associated challenges in various forms and have their own successes and experiences. Renewable energy, as a key component in the energy transition, has profound effects in many perspectives, including the creation of local jobs and local value. This however requires several preconditions to be put in place, which include a critical market size, a sound legal and regulatory framework, well-targeted support mechanisms, as well as qualified local providers.
In this context, the EU-GCC Clean Energy Technology Network and the Regional Center for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (RCREEE) are organizing a virtual workshop on the socio-economic benefits of clean energy technologies. The aim of the meeting is to exchange relevant best practices, information and lessons learned and advance regional initiatives on the socio-economic benefits of renewables energies in the context of energy transitions. In addition, it will discuss the challenges that the Arab region is facing and what can be done to transform them in business and economic opportunities. This online event will bring together policy makers, technology leaders, regulators, government representatives and experts to debate the key challenges and opportunities in the clean energy arena by examining; policies and regulations, technology advancement and current business models that could enable socio economic benefits and value addition.