National Consultant to provide training to the district energy managers and local public authorities on the development of technical specifications for the purchase of solid biofuels (Extended deadline)



Background

Moldova is part of the EU’s European Neighborhood Policy (ENP) and in the Eastern Partnership framework, which aims at strengthening individual and regional relationships between the EU and countries in its neighborhood. Moldova is also part of the Energy Community Treaty since 2010 and has signed the Association Agreement with EU in June 2014, including the DCFTA which entered into force in 2016. As a follow-up, Moldova is required to ensure transposition of the EU acquis Communautaire, which underpins the EU energy legislation on electricity, gas, oil, renewables, efficacity and environment. The country is planning to fully synchronize its electricity network with the ENTSO-E to connect to European electricity market.

The energy sector is one of the top priorities for the Government and it is addressed in Government’s Plans and several policy documents, laws, and regulations. The most important are the following: the draft National Development Strategy 2030, the National Energy Strategy 2030, Law on energy, Law on electricity, Law on promoting use of energy from renewable sources, Law on natural gas, Law on energy efficiency, Law on the energy performance of buildings, Law on the labelling of products with energy impact, Law on eco-design requirements for energy-related products, etc., as well as a list of secondary legislation, meant necessary to ensure for the implementation of the primary legislation.

In accordance with the existing strategic planning documents, one of main priorities of the Government is to diversify the energy mix with more renewable energy, which is also fully in line with commitments under the EU Clean Energy for all Europeans packages. Achieving this goal will require significant investment in the medium and long term, but also the country’s ability to attract and absorb the funds. The development of renewables, such as wind and solar, will also depend on improving the balancing capabilities of the Moldovan power system and its integration with neighboring countries.

Starting with October 2021, Moldova faced significant crisis in the gas sector, which outlined the need to undertake more actions towards improving energy security of the Republic of Moldova, both in the natural gas and electricity sectors.

To enhance security of energy supply, Moldovan authorities are seeking various ways to diversify gas and electricity supply, to strengthen its energy security and enabling a transparent, fully open, and well-functioning energy market.

The acute gas supply crisis in Moldova has also been subject of discussions within the Moldova-EU Association Council meeting on October 28, 2021. The EU and Moldova stressed the importance of resilience against any potential efforts by third parties to use energy as a geopolitical lever. The Association Council recalled the importance of continued energy market reform to strengthen competition and transparency in this sector. The EU has urged Moldova to ensure that the energy sector reform demonstrates full respect of the Energy Community acquis and is in line with the EU Third Energy Package. The EU side confirmed its support to the objective of Moldova to synchronize its electricity network with the Continental European Network (CEN), an important step towards the integration into the EU energy system and market.

Under these circumstances, the Government of Moldova will be assisted to tackle the current energy crisis and energy poverty and addressing prioritized systemic elements in the energy sector to cope with potential future energy crisis. In partnership with EU, UNDP Moldova will therefore, support the Government of Moldova: 

  • To tackle the current energy crisis and energy poverty, and addressing prioritized systemic elements in the energy sector to cope with potential future energy crisis.
  • To support the Government of Moldova in building its capacities towards strengthening the national energy security, as well as in improving the legal and regulatory framework and operationalizing specific rapid large-scale interventions to tackle energy poverty and support most vulnerable and affected groups of population and businesses.

The Programme duration is envisaged between 2022 – 2023 with support from Foreign Policy Instrument (herewith FPI) of EU.

The Project Concept has been approved by FPI of the EU in February 2022, paving the way for development of the full project proposal.

In this context, UNDP Moldova is seeking to recruit one National Consultant preparing for the training of district energy managers and local public authorities in the elaboration of specifications regarding the purchase of solid biofuels and training program.

Scope of work

As a result of the Energy and Biomass Project financed by the European Union and implemented by the UNDP Moldova in 2011 – 2018, 265 public institutions from the Republic of Moldova (schools, kindergartens, community facilities and hospitals) switched from heating produced by coal and natural gas to biomass, allowing 200 thousand people to benefit from clean and affordable energy[1]. According to a Report published by the Energy Efficiency Agency in 2022, more than 280 thermal plants on biomass have been installed in the country[2].

The problem of the poor quality of purchased solid biofuels is highlighted more and more often by the authorities. In this sense, the consultant will examine the possibility of integrating in the standardized purchase template all the technical elements that regulate the solid biofuels market in Moldova.

The major problems that the local public authorities are currently facing is insufficient knowledge to develop the minimum technical requirements for bio fuels (pellets, briquettes). The quality-related topic was also reflected in the report of the working group responsible for identifying solutions regarding the use of solid biofuels during the 2022-2023 heating season

In this regard, the UNDP Moldova intends to contract a national consultant qualified and experienced to support the LPAs and energy managers to ensure transparent procurement procedures in the procurement of solid biofuels, including the technical specification regarding the quality. The National Consultant will work based on the methodological approach and detailed action plan that shall be developed at the start of the activities, and which shall be agreed with the local public partners and approved by the Programme.

For the current assignment, the National Consultant shall be responsible of:

  • Establishment of the focus groups, in collaboration with the specialists of the Energy Efficiency Agency (EEA), public institutions and district energy managers that have solid biomass thermal power plants in their area of activity.
  • Elaboration of the minimum technical requirements for the procurement procedure of solid biofuels.
  • Development of methodologies for verifying the quality of solid biofuels.
  • Conduct a series of 3 trainings / workshops with LPAs and district energy managers to present the final version of the technical specification.
  • Preparation of training material (program, presentation, agenda, etc.)
  • When developing the procurement procedures, the consultant will take into account the following legal documents and bibliographical sources:
  • The Law no. 131 of 2015 on public procurement;
  • The Law no. 74 of 2020 on procurement in the sectors of energy, water, transportation and postal services,
  • GD no. 1070 of 2013 for the approval of the Regulation on solid biofuel,
  • International best practices in public procurement in the fields of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources.
  • Elaboration of a Final Report for the assignment, presenting the final version of the elaborated technical requirements specific to the purchase of solid biofuels for local public authorities.
  • The following institutions are proposed to be consulted during this assignment:
  • Energy Efficiency Agency (Chisinau) http://aee.md/
  • Local Public Authorities (town halls, local councils, beneficiary public institutions, energy managers, etc.).

[1] Energy and Biomass Project official web page: 199,000 people have access to affordable and clean energy, produced in the Republic of Moldova with the support of the European Union (published: October 19, 2018), available at: http://biomasa.md/en/communication-archive/199000-people-access-affordable-clean-energy-produced-republic-moldova-support-european-union/ (Accessed: August 18, 2022)

[2] Energy Efficiency Agency official web page: Moldova and solid biofuel producers (published: July 26, 2022), available at:

https://www.aee.md/en/news/situa-ia-la-zi-privind-centralele-termice-pe-biomasa-din-republica-moldova-si-producatorii-de-biocombustibil-solid (Accessed: August 18, 2022)

Requirements for experience

1. Academic Qualifications:

  • University degree in energy, energy efficiency, renewable energy sources or other related areas.

2. Experience and knowledge:

  • Minimum five (5) years of relevant professional experience in implementation of energy efficiency measures and/or promotion of renewable energy sources;
  • Proven experience in preparing procurement procedures or technical specification in the fields of solid biofuels;
  • Proven experience in organizing and leading trainings / workshops with a broad range of stakeholders, including representatives of Local Public Authorities, energy managers, etc.;
  • Advanced research skills and capacity to produce analyses using quantitative and qualitative data.
  • Previous experience in development assistance or related work for a donor organization, development partners, UN Agencies would be an advantage.
  • Fluency in written and spoken Romanian, Russian is required for this assignment. Good level of English is required.

The UNDP Moldova is committed to the workforce diversity. Women, persons with disabilities, Roma and other ethnic or religious minorities, persons living with HIV, as well as refugees and other non-citizens legally entitled to work in the Republic of Moldova, are particularly encouraged to apply. 

Documents to be included

Interested local consultants must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications:  

  1. Proposal, explaining why he/she is most suitable for the work, including past experience in similar assignments, providing a brief information on above qualifications and methodology on how he/she will approach and conduct the work (if applicable). 
  2. OFFEROR’S LETTER TO UNDP CONFIRMING INTEREST AND AVAILABILITY FOR THE INDIVIDUAL CONTRACTOR (IC) ASSIGNMENT
  3. CV, including information about experience in similar assignments with at least 3 references. 

Important notice:

The applicants who have the statute of Government Official / Public Servant prior to appointment will be asked to submit the following documentation:

  • a no-objection letter in respect of the applicant received from the Government, and;
  • the applicant is certified in writing by the Government to be on official leave without pay for the entire duration of the Individual Contract.

A retired government official is not considered in this case a government official, and as such, may be contracted.

Financial proposal

The financial proposal shall specify a total lump sum amount, and payment terms around specific and measurable (qualitative and quantitative) deliverables (i.e., whether payments fall in installments or upon completion of the entire contract). Payments are based upon output, i.e., upon delivery of the services specified in the TOR. In order to assist the requesting unit in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal will include a breakdown of this lump sum amount (including fees, taxes, travel costs, accommodation costs, communication, and number of anticipated working days). 

Other details here: https://sc.undp.md/jobdetails/2629/ 

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