Gray2Green team members planting trees at the University of Nigeria.
Gray2Green team members planting trees at the University of Nigeria. | Credit: Gray2Green Media Team

5 Blogs You May Have Missed in 2021

By Steve Hardeman

In 2021, Climatelinks featured a wide array of USAID’s climate-related work through its blogs. The Climatelinks blog acts as a resource for the global Climatelinks community and serves as a storehouse for information in the form of lessons learned, success stories, newsletter recaps, and report summaries

Below, find five blogs that you may have missed, all covering one of USAID’s many initiatives in support of addressing climate change worldwide.

5. Wave Energy Could Power Vietnam’s Islands, but Start-Ups Need USAID’s Help notes building momentum with relation to venture capital investments in climate technology. For example, Vietnam’s vast network of islands can be difficult to connect to the grid and would benefit from a technology that generates power locally. Enter wave energy: a newer innovation that taps powerful ocean waves to do just that. Vietnam’s miles of coastline and islands offer not just beautiful beaches but a reliable, renewable source of energy as well. This blog tells the story of how USAID’s Mission in Vietnam is working through the USAID INVEST initiative to advance this technology.

4. RCMRD, SERVIR Partnership Supports Rwanda’s Leadership in Sustainable Land Management explores the work of SERVIR, a joint partnership between USAID and NASA and regional partners around the world that helps developing regions build capacity to use satellite data to support sustainable development. Rwanda has one of the world’s fastest-growing economies, as well as large refugee communities to protect and important natural habitats to conserve. Despite the challenges of balancing sustainability with social and economic needs, Rwanda has emerged as a world leader in climate action. SERVIR’s land use and land cover mapping there supports Rwanda’s commitments to the Paris agreement, and has been made publicly available to empower more people to participate in Rwanda’s climate leadership.

3. USAID-NREL Partnership Expands Electric Vehicle Deployment Programs to Support Climate Change Objectives and Decarbonization highlights several projects aimed at streamlining development of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure, workforce training, and grid management, which build upon the recently launched global Greening the Grid EV Toolkit. The blog provides links to a number of projects supporting EV market development, as well as a study detailing transit bus electrification in Mexico. 

2. Connecting, Sharing, and Learning for Regional Energy Integration covers work undertaken through USAID’s Asia Enhanced Development and Growth through Energy (Asia EDGE) initiative and the South Asia Regional Energy Hub (SAREH), which together promote utility modernization, deployment of clean energy technologies, regional energy connectivity and trade, and competitive and transparent energy markets. The blog shares five session highlights from the South Asia Energy Series, which was a sequence of webinars with the goal of allowing prominent private and public energy stakeholders to interact around clean energy development and deployment in South Asia.

1. Gray2Green Harnesses the Power of Youth to Innovate Nigeria’s Sustainable Future highlights the work of Kelo Uchendu, a mechanical engineering student at the University of Nigeria and founder of the Gray2Green movement. Grey2Green raises awareness about climate justice and works on student-led engineering projects to innovate new sustainable technology, such as electric vehicles and energy-efficient cookstoves. Kelo is able to connect with like minded global changemakers through USAID’s Youth Lead program.

Strategic Objective
Adaptation, Integration, Mitigation
Adaptation, Emissions, Low Emission Development, Climate Change Integration, Clean Energy, Health, Transportation, Land Use, Mitigation, Sustainable Landscapes, Urban

Steve Hardeman

Stephan Hardeman is the Site and Community Manager for Climatelinks. He draws on more than three years of experience in communications for international environmental trust funds to support Climatelinks through USAID’s Sharing Environment and Energy Knowledge (SEEK) initiative by engaging the Climatelinks community and featuring its work. Stephan has MAs in International Affairs (American University) and Natural Resources and Sustainable Development (United Nations University for Peace) and BAs in English and Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin.

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Building on more than 120 years of combined experience of its two parent agencies – USAID and NASA – SERVIR joined the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow to highlight work that betters both scientific understanding and human well-being.
The task before us is not easy. Climate change is one of the most difficult challenges we have ever faced — one that touches every corner of the globe and every priority we have as an Agency, from ecosystems and biodiversity to food and water security. USAID is prepared to address this challenge given our breadth of technical expertise, decades of experience, and longstanding relationships with over 100 partner countries.
Climate change impacts different regions in different ways and, as such, requires tailored initiatives to meet local development needs. Some places will experience much more (or less) warming, others will receive more rainfall or see longer and more frequent droughts, and yet others will experience an increase in wildfires. Every region will face challenges brought on by the climate crisis and will integrate programs and systems to adapt.