How Thailand’s Solar Power Visionary Built an Industry with a Boost from IFC

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Courtesy of Solar Power Company Group

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • One of the winners of this year’s UN Momentum for Change awards has been transforming Thailand’s renewable energy capacity with utility-scale solar farms.
  • To get finance flowing for what was then a new industry in the country, she worked with the World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Clean Technology Fund to access blended finance.
  • The project is increasing clean energy capacity while helping drive economic growth in one of Thailand’s most impoverished regions.

Worldbank – Thailand’s solar power market was at a standstill in 2008, with solar energy accounting for less than 2 MW of installed capacity. Technology costs were falling, though, and the government was starting incentives for renewable energy developers. Wandee Khunchornyakong, a retired solar panel manufacturing executive, saw potential.

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