Contributions in the context of COP21 in Paris

Making a case for sustainable wood energy

ECO's CEO Dr. Steve Sepp in the plenary discussion. To his left Christina Seeberg-Elverfeldt, policy advisor to the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation.

2015-12/ Green energies in Africa figured top at the COP 21 in Paris. While the bulk of the question was about implementing solar and hydro energy to reach African rural electrification targets (300 GW in renewables until 2030), a session at the parallel Global Landscapes Forum highlighted the potentials of wood energy on the continent. ECO CEO Dr. Steve Sepp presented figures from the German-Madegassan PGM-E programme, parts of which were implemented by ECO, to show how afforestation benefits landscape restoration and livelihood perspectives. Details on http://www.landscapes.org/glf-2015/agenda-item/2015-glf-day-2-sunday-6-december-2/6-parallel-discussion-forums-2/fueling-a-debate-sustainable-wood-energy-as-restoration-option/

GIZ procurement report: ECO again listed among top contractors

Rural development and agronomy dominate the business

2015-11/ As ever, ECO Consult has been among the top ten contractors of German Technical Cooperation in 2014, despite increasingly international procurements and an ever widening scope of competitors. The 2014 procurement report of Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, the world's biggest provider of official development assistance, elucidates ECO's sturdy market position. In the report, now out, ECO figures fifth in numbers of contracts awarded in its business segment and, eighth in the financial volume of cooperations with GIZ. ECO's GIZ-related turnovers in the time span have increased once more.

Altogether, over 40% of GIZ's financial dispenses to consultancies went into the following areas: rural development and agronomy (26%); crises, conflicts, disasters (18%); post-conflict (14%); water resources (14%); extension and job markets (14%);  regionalisation, decentralisation, communal development (13%).

Among all thematic areas catered for by consultancies, rural development and agronomy figured most prominently. Compared with 2013, this area increased its financial share by 70%, which made it the most important one by far. But the share of GIZ service providers from the disaster and relief sector was already rising.

Private-sector-consultancies are praised in the procurement report for their decisive contributions to realizing added value and implementing development policies. "Consultancies are our close partners" sais GIZ, "in order to achieve utmost impacts at best value for money for our commissioners". 

On their own acoounts GIZ is the world's largest service provider in international development for sustainable development. Its 45 commissions to ECO with a volume of roughly 8 million EUR make it one of one of ECO Consult's major clients.

The GIZ procurement report presents an annual listing of the company's major contractors. It comprises the 100 most prominent cooperation partners internationally and across all fields of expertise. 

Contact: ECO Consult Sepp & Busacker Partnerschaft, Oberaula, Germany

Protecting vital water reservoirs

Workshop in Mexico

2015-10/ Mexico's protected areas (PA) furnish services that are vital to the infrastructure of the country's urban agglomerations. One example is provision of freshwater. A particularly crucial and fragile ecosystem is the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. Its PAs cater for an area inhabited by 30 million including the capital of Mexico City. ECO Consult has now assisted in the preparation and facilitation of a workshop that trained residential park managers and technical staff in how to identify and economically valorize ecosystem services, and integrate them into their respective planning processes.

Experience and lessons from Madagascar

Optimising woodfuel value chains

2015-10/ Value chain approaches are a standard instrument in addressing structurally deficient practices in natural resources management. One obvious application is wood energy subsectors in Subsaharan Africa. The PGM-E programme (now PAGE) of German ODA has helped, with a value chain modernisation approach designed by ECO Consult, to reduce pressure on natural forests, strenghthen national energy independency and raise living standards, since 1995. Details of its set-up, distinctive principles and roads of action that merit replication are now unfold in a 95-page compendium of issue papers > download (PDF, 4.4 MB). It reveals typical operational stages and illustrates a good deal of interfaces for outscaling  – to other regions or even, sectors.