Black & Veatch Corporation, a consulting company specializing in infrastructure development in the fields of energy, water and information, has been selected by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to assess the potential for Renewable Energy use in 27 countries located throughout Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.Kansas City, Missouri – September 5, 2002 [SolarAccess.com] The objective of the project is to identify a pipeline of Renewable Energy projects suitable for further investigation and possible future funding by the EBRD. The EBRD is owned by 60 countries and two intergovernmental institutions. It was established in 1991, after the disintegration of communism in Central and Eastern European and the former Soviet Union countries to bolster business and promote environmental stewardship through economics and governance. The Renewable Energy assessment is an essential piece of the EBRD’s overall endeavor to identify and ensure reliability of future energy needs. According to the EBRD Transition Report 2001, “These countries are rich in both traditional and renewable resources. However, so far these countries have not taken advantage of their resource wealth. Huge investments are required if the region is to realize its energy potential.” The study is a technical evaluation that will include various types of Renewable Energy resources available for commercial use. Black & Veatch and its international subcontractors will develop a compilation of country profiles that identify key areas that have high Renewable Energy potential. It will recommend Renewable Energy projects that are well-suited for these countries including wind, geothermal, solar, small to medium hydroelectric, biomass and other supporting and complementary technologies such as energy storage to ensure reliability. Black & Veatch will then rank and screen the initial project ideas by technical, market and economic potential to determine whether or not they are suitable to be considered for investment by the EBRD. Eventually, this process will result in a short list of potential projects that merit further evaluation. “The breadth of this review is immense. It involves reviewing the prospects for five energy resources in 27 countries that represent about a quarter of the world’s land mass. In addition, we are working with a team of seven qualified subcontractors scattered throughout the region. The sheer volume of data alone requires some unique approaches to project management,” said Black & Veatch Project Manager John Wynne. “We are confident that the effort will ultimately lead to the development of many successful renewable energy projects.” The EBRD project is funded by the U.S. Trade and Development Agency Evergreen Fund and The UK EBRD Technical Cooperation Fund and is scheduled for completion in December 2002.