Marcel Raats is the manager of the energy and climate team at RVO's International Development Department. He started working for RVO in 2000. Marcel and his team support energy and climate transitions in developing countries and emerging economies. They work on energy-related topics such as access to renewable energy and solutions such as offshore wind and green hydrogen. Marcel answers 5 questions about what this means for him and his team.
1. Why is your team's work important?
"Climate change affects us all. We help countries mitigate more greenhouse gas emissions faster. We also help countries develop a green energy supply that meets their needs for economic development. Our support makes them less dependent on fossil fuels.
Energy transitions must be just and inclusive. Right now, over 2.4 billion people cook using polluting, unhealthy and inefficient fuels. And over 700 million people lack access to the most simple and fundamental forms of electricity. The United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals call us to leave no one behind. This also applies to the energy agenda. The Netherlands aims to ensure energy access for at least 100 million people in developing countries by 2030.
2. What motivates your team to do this work?
Our team is highly motivated to support the global goals for climate change mitigation, poverty alleviation and the role of energy in these. Energy justice, equal chances for development and care for our planet drive the team. This shared ambition shapes how we work together and support each other. It makes a team to be proud of.
3. How does your team contribute to the energy transition?
We always approach things with a long-term perspective. What do we need for the transition of an energy (sub)sector or market? We look at what others are doing and see what we can add. Via our programmes, we offer technical assistance and financial support and combine Dutch solutions with the local context. Our partners are local organisations, SMEs and international private companies. We support the development of an enabling environment for the market. And we develop solutions that reach people in poverty.
4. What kind of support do you and your team offer?
RVO finances technical assistance and offers results-based grants. But we also help build partnerships and networks, and connect organisations with other RVO subsidies and programmes. Much of our support is through international organisations like NGOs and public implementers. These carry out in-country activities that support private entrepreneurs and companies.
5. Any tips for organisations that want to carry out an energy project?
- Familiarise yourself with the local context and adapt your strategy.
- Develop a long-term perspective plan. Transitions and market development require patience and long-term commitment.
- Develop a business model that is not indefinitely reliant on public support.
And, of course, if you need advice or want to find a partner for your project, contact us!"
Energy transition questions
Do you have a question about energy transition projects in developing countries and how we can help you?