uganda-flag.png
Country

Uganda

Population

43.25 million

Energy Access

20%

People Without Electricity

34,000,000

Factsheet: Decentralized Renewables Can Enhance Agro-Productivity In Tanzania

Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) sources can enhance agro-productivity and food security. This Fact Sheet highlights the current state of DRE powered agro-processing activities in Tanzania, drawing on analysis by: Access to Energy Institute (A2EI), The National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Energy for Impact (NREL&E4I), the Energy Change Lab (the Lab), and African Development Bank Group (AfDB).

Research Summary: Access to Energy Will Result in Better Human Development Outcomes

The agricultural sector has the potential to become a game-changer in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), where 80%of the production is from smallholder farmers. However, less than one in three farmers have electricity access.

The Economic Times Energy Leadership Summit

The Summit will bring together ministers, public sector officials and private industry executives to help create an informed debate on the key attributes of the new world order and to collaborate and discuss latest business trends.

Going Beyond Access: Financing of Assets and Appliances Stimulates Energy Demand in Uganda

According to a recent household survey by the Uganda Bureau of Statistics, only 57% of Ugandans have access to any form of electricity. Of these, 19% and 38% were connected to the grid and off-grid power, respectively. Most of those without access to electricity are in rural areas where over 75% of the households reside and depend on agriculture as their main source of income.

Transitioning to Clean Energy a Priority to Save Our #OnlyOneEarth and Humanity

Reducing the use of ‘dirty’ fossil fuels and speeding up the transition to renewable forms of energy, such as solar and wind, has been identified as one of the best options for slowing down climate change for a more optimistic future.

Post the Pandemic Hiatus, Spirited Investments, and Commitments set to Drive Energy Access in Africa

Power for All was part of the over 1,000 participants from the energy sector gathered in Kigali, Rwanda, at the recent and highly successful Sustainable Energy for All Forum. The event made significant progress in advancing a clean and inclusive energy transition around the world, including a commitment of USD 347 million to support energy access and transition. The team shares their highlights and takeaways from the forum.

Interview with Ifeoma Malo on Power for All’s Seventh Anniversary

Our CEO, Kristina Skierka, reflects on seven years of Power for All's ending energy poverty campaign with Ifeoma Malo, the co-founder and CEO of Clean Technology Hub, which focuses on rural electrification and renewable energy.

Powering Agriculture Campaign Launched in India

Power for All launched its Powering Agriculture Campaign In Jharkhand, India, through a virtual webinar titled "Strengthening Agriculture Value Chain through Productive Use of Energy (PUE)" on April 28, 2022. The campaign is essential in a country where most of the population depends on agriculture and related industries for their livelihood. Expanding access to modern and clean energy can play a vital role in transforming the agriculture sector and increasing the productivity and incomes of farmers.

Campaign Update: May 2022

Power for All was well represented at the Sustainable Energy for All Forum in Kigali, Rwanda. The team, led by our CEO Kristina Skierka, also co-chaired two-panel discussions at the event, ‘Transitioning to the Grid of the Future’ and ‘Powering Jobs: Building a Workforce to Meet the SGD 7 Challenge’. The Powering Jobs campaign kicked off its first steering committee meeting in Ethiopia and held its second in Uganda. We also have the initial findings from our health survey from Jharkhand State in India. Read on for these and other updates from our campaigns.

Energy Catalyst Accelerates Innovation to Deliver Clean Energy Access

Energy Catalyst recently announced up to £40 million to support early- to late-stage innovators to develop market-based technologies and business models that accelerate access to affordable, reliable and low-carbon energy in Africa, South Asia and Indo-Pacific regions for Rounds 9 and 10 funding cycles.

Building Partnerships for an Integrated Energy Approach: Experience from the Utilities 2.0 project, Uganda

Building a strong partnership has been one of the key strengths of the Utilities 2.0 project that has contributed significantly to its successful implementation. This was the key takeaway from a webinar titled“Building Partnerships for an Integrated Energy Approach: Experience from the Utilities 2.0 project, Uganda,'' held on May 5. Representatives of all the partner organizations shared their experiences in developing and managing partnerships that shaped the project's success, challenges faced, and lessons for scaling up or replicating the project across Africa.

Enlit Africa

From the 7-9 June 2022, Africa's energy and power professionals will gather at Enlit Africa (formerly African Utility Week and POWERGEN Africa) in Cape Town to explore the theme "Collaboration to fast forward Africa’s Energy Transition."

Road to India's Rural Energy Goals Goes Through its Cities

Living in Madhopur Diara village, across the river Ganga, about 15km from Patna, 12-year-old Soni didn't see a light bulb until she turned eight. For years, she walked through the dusty fog trying to find her way to school.

Join us at the Sustainable Energy for All Forum, 17 – 19 May 2022, Kigali, Rwanda

We are delighted to announce our participation at this year’s Sustainable Energy for All Forum, 17-19 May 2022, in Kigali, Rwanda. This landmark global gathering brings people together to take stock of progress, showcase success and identify solutions to achieve faster, broader gains towards sustainable energy for all.

Future of Energy Week

Join Economist Impact, Power for All and 4,000 policymakers, energy experts, business leaders and scientists to explore how a fast, widespread energy transition will keep global warming in check while meeting Asia’s energy needs. Examine the implications of these changes with other business leaders at Future of Energy Week.

Powering up the workforce for universal energy access

Ashden and BloombergNEF (BNEF) invite you to join us as we explore how to blast through the jobs and skills barrier preventing universal access to clean, affordable, decentralized energy.

Interview with Prof Dan Kammen on PayGo, a Disruptive Tool for Just Energy Transitions

In this podcast interview, Kristina Skierka, Founder and CEO of Power for All, speaks with Dan Kammen, a Professor of Energy at the University of California, Berkeley, on the social and technological innovations that have transformed the renewable energy sector over the years including the PayGo business model that is driving a just energy transition.

Interview with Alice Goodbrook on Energy Catalyst’s Support for Innovations to End Energy Poverty.

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Kristina Skierka, Founder and CEO of Power for All, speaks with Alice Goodbrook, Innovation Lead for Energy Catalyst on the Energy Catalyst program, which funds private sector innovation and energy access.

Energy Access, Financial Inclusion, and Improved Livelihoods: PayGo’s Triple Win

“Africa is simply tired of being in the dark. It is time to take decisive action and turn around this narrative: to light up and power Africa – and accelerate the pace of economic transformation, unlock the potential of businesses, and drive much-needed industrialization to create jobs,” This was said by Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank, in his speech at the Africa Union Summit held in January 2016 while outlining the bank’s five development priority areas for Africa’s transformation including Light up and Power Africa initiative.

Building Partnerships for an Integrated Energy Approach - Experience from the Utilities 2.0 project

Power for All, in partnership with Equatorial Power, Energrow, East African Power and Umeme Uganda Ltd, has the pleasure to invite you to a virtual webinar on Building Partnerships for an Integrated Energy Approach: Utilities 2.0 Project (Uganda) Experience.

India’s Decentralized Renewable Energy Enterprises Show Resilience Amid COVID -19 Pandemic

Clean Network has recently published the State of the Sector report, and it shows that the Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) sector in India, with policy and financing support, is poised to bounce back from the sluggish growth of the past year.

Strengthening Agriculture Value Chain through Productive Uses of Energy (PUE)

Power for All is convening this webinar with a focus on energy transition in the agriculture sector through increased involvement and adoption of Productive Uses of Energy (PUE) appliances in the agriculture sector of Jharkhand thereby positively impacting farmers' incomes and productivity along the way.

Campaign Update: April 2022

As part of the Utilities 2.0 (U2.0) campaign, a webinar titled “Building Partnerships for an Integrated Energy Approach: Experience from the Utilities 2.0 project, Uganda” is planned for May 5. During this knowledge sharing session, the project’s implementing partners will share how they built and managed partnerships that have been key to the project's success, the challenges faced and lessons learned for scaling and replicating the project elsewhere.

Factsheet: Off-grid PayGo: Unlocking Affordable Energy Access and Financial Inclusion in SSA

PayGo (short for pay-as-you-go) is a system that allows customers to purchase solar home systems and appliances through installments. It has not only enabled bottom-of-the-pyramid households to access clean energy but it is also creating opportunities for financial inclusion and economic development.

Podcast: Inspiring Women Leaders in Renewable Energy: Dr Debra Rowe

Our guest in this special episode paying homage to women leaders in the sector is Dr Debra Rowe, the President of the U.S. Partnership for Education for Sustainable Development. Dr Rowe says her career has been dominated by fulfling the need to give people information so that they can move out of energy poverty, and also ensure that they can own their own energy or at the very least, access affordable energy.

Podcast: Inspiring Women Leaders in Renewable Energy: Emily McAteer

In the special episode paying homage to women leaders in the sector, our guest is Emily McAteer, Co-founder and CEO at Odyssey Energy Solutions. She says investors are starting to fund women-led projects in the renewable energy sector. McAteer says this is a good sign that things are changing for the better for women in the male-dominated sector. However, efforts to address biases should be intensified.

Inspiring Women Leaders in Renewable Energy: Lucia Wamala

In this special podcast celebrating inspiring women leaders in renewable energy, we feature Lucia Wamala, Founder and CEO of Bakulu Power. She shares on on her journey into the DRE sector and the importance of gender equity in energy access.

Women in Power: Celebrating Inspiring Women Leaders in Clean Energy Access

The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is ‘Equality today for a sustainable tomorrow.’ It recognizes the contribution of women and girls worldwide in addressing climate change for a sustainable future. To mark the day, Power for All pays tribute to some of the most accomplished women in the renewable energy sector as they share their passion and stories in a male-dominated field.

Campaign Update: March 2022

Our Powering Jobs campaign kicked off its first steering committee meetings with key stakeholders at the global and national levels. The U2.0 campaign held a briefing session with key project partners to share the insights and findings from the pilot research. As part of the Powering Agriculture campaign, our CEO, Kristina Skierka, facilitated a meeting on productive use of renewable energy for an agriculture action plan with key stakeholders in Kampala, Uganda.

Revolutionizing Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) through Blockchain

Blockchain is in the spotlight this month and you will get to know of its potential in the battle against energy poverty. Blockchain can be a game-changer in accelerating the scaling of innovations to increase energy access to the millions of people rural communities living in Africa and Asia living without access to reliable power.

Inspiring Women Leaders in Renewable Energy: Jennye Greene

In this special podcast celebrating inspiring women leaders in renewable energy, we feature Jennye Greene, an expert on energy access. She speaks on her journey into the DRE sector and the importance of gender equity in energy access. Jenny says as the renewable energy sector grows, there has to be deliberate efforts to ensure gender diversity. Conscious choices have to be made to make that happen!

India’s Union Budget 2022: What Does it Hold for Climate Action, Energy Access, and Rural Development?

On February 1, 2022, India’s Finance Minister, Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman, tabled the 2022-23 Union Budget in Parliament. Climate action and Productivity were among the four pillars shaping this year’s budget. This article highlights some of the provisions in the budget that present opportunities to strengthen climate action alongside rural development and productivity.

Country spotlight: Cape Town Looks Towards DRE to End its Energy Woes

Cape Town wants to set itself free from South Africa’s scheduled power cuts introduced because of the fragile state of the national power utility. The South African main grid has been unable to meet the country's energy demands since 2007. Now the city wants to explore renewable energy to solve the problem.

Interview with Dr. Arunabha Ghosh: 2022 Top Energy Access Trends

In this podcast episode, Dr. Ghosh, the founder and CEO of Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), and Power for All CEO, Kristina Skierka continue to dissect our 2022 top trends for energy access.

Data for Energy Access: Power for All's Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK)

Power for All's Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK) is a research tool built for fact-based advocacy and communication. PEAK has amassed over 600 registered users from all over the world.

Campaign Update: February 2022

Our Powering Jobs' survey wraps up at the end of February and the next steps include Focus Group Discussions in each of the five survey countries. Our CEO, Kristina Skierka, spoke at The Economic Times “Energyworld Solar Power Congress.” Read on for these and other updates from our campaigns.

Power Africa Leadership to Meet Cleantech Innovators in SF Bay Area

Mark Carrato, Power Africa Coordinator, and Dan Kammen, USAID Energy Innovation Advisor, together with a senior team from Power Africa, will visit the Bay area on a domestic trip focused on connecting with cleantech innovators.

Connecting Higher Education and the Green Economy Community

This event provides an overview about how to update all academic areas to help create an inclusive and skilled workforce to address the climate crisis and provide careers that support sustainable development.

The Economic Times Energyworld Solar Power Congress

The Economic Times Energyworld Solar Power Congress aims to bring the key stakeholders of the solar power industry on a single platform for an informed debate on the main issues and opportunities for growth in this industry.

Campaign Update: January 2022

2021 was a year of growth at Power for All as we celebrated our sixth anniversary. The team grew, we started new projects and successfully participated in several global events. Here are some of the highlights from our campaigns and projects.

Shining the Light on Women!

Women have a key role to play in combating climate change and achieving universal energy access, both as energy entrepreneurs and end-users. Yet both groups tend to be overlooked in today’s market and face huge challenges. Here Camco Clean Energy’s Impact Manager Laura Lahti investigates the roots of these problems and shares her thoughts on what is needed to resolve them.

Fact Sheet: Solarizing Rural health Centers in Jharkhand

Nearly 38 million people in the state of Jharkhand, India, do not have access to critical and basic health services. Decentralized Renewable Energy can empower the 4000 rural health centers with reliable electricity, which will ensure quality health care for all in the state.

Interview with Glenn Pearce-Oroz: 2022 Clean Energy Access Trends

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Kristina Skierka speaks with Glenn Pearce-Oroz, Senior Director of International Relations and Special Projects at Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) on trends to watch out for in the Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) sector in 2022. At the beginning of every year, Power for All releases a trends report that highlights anticipated developments that will shape the sector in the year informed by feedback from a survey to partners on their predictions.

Decentralized Renewable Energy Trends to Watch in 2022

From a heated African UN COP27 to unlocking of finances for small and medium-sized enterprises, more jobs, and the take-off of electric two-and three-wheelers. These and others are amongst the top trends to watch in 2022 in the clean energy access arena according to our partners. This year, we again reached out to them to share their predictions on what will be hot for the sector in the new year. Their verdict is out. Read on to see what’s in store in what seems a stellar year ahead!

Energy equity is a full harvest

What does it mean to have energy equity? Energy equity means that the farmer in rural Uganda doesn’t have to worry about reduced harvest yields, food spoilage, or a loss in revenues. It means residents of nearby villages don’t have to walk long distances to process their maize or worry about the uncertainties of climate change on their food supply.

Energy equity is a successful small business

What does it mean to have energy equity?

Interview with Babatomiwa Bayo-Ojo: Promoting Healthcare Service Delivery in Nigeria

In this podcast, the focus is on the installation of mini-grids in Karu Primary Health Centre in Abuja, Nigeria, by Volsus Energy. It represents the Volsus Solar for Health (VSFH) mini-grid program which is targeting to install 5,000 units of mini-grids across health centers to improve healthcare delivery services in Nigeria.

Energy equity is the right to healthcare

The current COVID-19 crisis has brought into sharp relief the inadequacy of Africa and India’s healthcare infrastructure—including access to energy—especially in the case of the rural poor. WHO notes that 70 percent of medical devices cannot be used in developing countries due to unreliable power supply.

Campaign update: November 2021

Power for All’s 2021 Powering Jobs census has been launched with key partners in five countries. Power for All hosted a side event at COP26 on Energy empowering employment moderated by Kristina Skierka. Also, learn about our latest updates from the commissioning of the utilities 2.0 Twaake pilot by the Minister of Energy and Mineral Development.

COP26: Climate finance for fueling Renewable Energy in the Global South

Power for All reviews the need for increased financial investments in the Global South in this decade of action, to ensure energy access goals are achieved.

Beyond COP26: renewable energy empowering employment and equity

After the conclusion of COP26, Power for All summarizes the key takeaways for the decentralized energy sector from its various panel discussions and interviews during the two weeks. The need to address employment and equity in a world recovering from the pandemic is now more urgent than ever.

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewable Energy Can End Energy Inequities Inherent in the Global Power System

Nearly 800 million people live without electricity, and millions more have only intermittent or unreliable access worldwide. Distributed renewables can address energy inequities by offering customized solutions that provide clean, sufficient, affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy.

New integrated energy model to reduce electrification cost in Uganda

Today, the state minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Honorable Okaasai Sidronius Opolot, commissioned a 40kWp mini grid in Kiwumu, Mukono district in Uganda to power 300 households and 60 local businesses.

Interview with Jay Taneja: Energy Equity

In this episode of the Power for All podcast which is a continuation of Power for All's integrated energy podcast series, Kristina Skierka, Founder and CEO of Power for All speaks with Jay Taneja, Assistant Professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he heads the Systems Towards Infrastructure Measurement and Analytics (STIMA) Lab.

India can lead in ending energy poverty for good: will it seize the opportunity?

Power for All looks into the role India needs to play in ending energy poverty by increasing investments in decentralised renewable energy sector.

Energy Empowering Employment

Join Power for All’s panel at the SDG 7 Pavilion to be a part of the discussion on #PoweringJobs and scaling the Distributed Renewable Energy sector.

COP26 side event: The Nordics as pioneers in developing jobs and skills in Africa

The Nordics as pioneers in developing jobs and skills in Africa – The Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa contributing to employment within the off-grid sector.

Empowering Women Through a Just Transition

This session will explore the importance of clean energy as a driver of social impact and a lever for empowering women. Clean energy is key to increasing energy access for rural communities in Africa - with direct benefits for people's lives, livelihoods, and learning. Clean energy also provides opportunities for women entrepreneurs - such as selling solar lamps and installing solar panels.

Interview with Mike Bess and Ankit Agarwal: Bioenergy for Sustainable Local Energy Services and Energy Access in Africa

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Anand Pathanjali speaks to Mike Bess and Ankit Agarwal from BESA 2 project on behalf of NIRAS LTS. NIRAS-LTS partnered with Aston University, E4tech and AIGUASOL for a two-year research project entitled ‘Bioenergy for Sustainable Local Energy Services and Energy Access in Africa - Phase 2’ (BSEAA2), part of the Transforming Energy Access (TEA) programme, funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO). The TEA programme aimed to create innovative solutions for scaling up technologies and business models to support energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).

Interview with Dan Klinck, CEO of East African Power

In this episode of the Power for All's Integrated Energy podcast series, Kristina Skierka, founder and CEO of Power for All speaks with Dan Klinck, CEO of East African Power, an integrated renewable energy development company delivering affordable clean energy in sub-Saharan Africa.

Interview with Richard Harrison (Smart Power Myanmar) & Sam Duby (TFE): Integrating DRE and Agriculture in Myanmar

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Richard Harrison, the head of Smart Power Myanmar. Richard is joined by Sam Duby, research partner of Smart Power Myanmar, who is from TFE Energy. In support of this year's UN food system summit, this conversation is part of a special series on the critical link between food systems and decentralized renewable energy. This discussion aims to shed light on game-changing ideas in Africa and Asia that can help ensure sustainable energy for all, improve farmers' lives and support economic growth.

For local manufacturing to create jobs in Africa, governments need to look beyond standard incentives

For countries in sub-Saharan Africa to undertake successful assembly and manufacturing of solar products, there is need to ensure an enabling environment is created to encourage companies and investors to move beyond future commitments. It is critical that countries put in place that prioritise local content in off-grid solar procurement, as otherwise this will likely create supply side constraints in reaching energy access targets

Interview with Shaily Jha: Improving Women’s Productivity and Incomes through Clean Energy

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, a forum for leaders working to end energy poverty, Power for All speaks with Shaily Jha of the Council on Energy, Environment, and Water (CEEW). Shaily is CEEW’s energy access program lead, works in access to clean cooking with a focus on gender and social inclusion, leads the work on integrating a gender lens and empowering livelihoods, a USD 3 million initiative. The conversation is based on CEEW’s recent report -- Improving Women's Productivity and Incomes through Clean Energy in India.

Time is fast running out to end energy poverty

Despite the remarkable growth in rural electrification over the last decade, the world is falling short of its sustainable energy goals. Lack of access to energy impedes both economic and human development. In an urgent call to action ahead of summits on energy and climate, the co-facilitators of the SDG7 Technical Advisory Group assert that we must radically accelerate the pace of scaling energy access to create a more resilient, equitable and sustainable future.

Interview with Riccardo Ridolfi: The future of energy from a mini-grid perspective

In this episode of the Power for All podcast which is a continuation of the Power for All's integrated energy podcast series, Kristina Skierka, Founder and CEO of Power for All speaks with Riccardo Ridolfi, Chief Executive Officer of Equatorial Power: a mini-grid company that pioneered off-grid electrification and productive use with substantial business model innovation focused around closing the agro-processing value gap across rural Africa.

What future does integrated energy hold for utilities?

Alone, neither centralized nor decentralized energy is purpose-built to end energy poverty at scale. Integrated energy approach through public-private partnerships can accelerate energy access through faster and lower-cost electrification and advance productive use of energy. However, regulatory and finance interventions are needed to transform national energy systems into robust networks that can deliver reliable, affordable, universal access for all.

Clean energy transition through integrated energy, what will it take?

Neither centralized nor decentralized energy is purpose-built to end energy poverty at scale, alone. Integrated energy approach through public private partnerships can accelerate energy access, through faster and lower-cost electrification, and advance productive use of energy. However, regulatory and finance interventions are needed to transform national energy systems into robust networks that deliver reliable, affordable, universal access for all.

Interview with Aaron Leopold: The Utilities 2.0 Twaake project

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Kristina Skierka, Founder and CEO of Power for All speaks with Aaron Leopold, Chief Executive Officer of EnerGrow, a Uganda based asset financing company that provides its customers with productive energy assets and training to rural and peri-urban businesses.

Interview with Rajneesh Rana: Bulk procurement improves quality, reduces cost, and increases the uptake of off-grid appliances

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Rajneesh Rana of Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL). In support of this year's UN food system summit, the conversation with EESL is part of a special series on the critical link between food systems and decentralized renewable energy. The discussion aims to shed light on game changing ideas in Africa and Asia that can help ensure sustainable energy for all, improve farmer's lives, and support economic growth.

Backgrounder: Twaake, More Than Just Light

The Utilities 2.0 Twaake project in Uganda is a collaboration between centralized and decentralized energy companies including East Africa Power, EnerGrow, Equatorial Power, Power for All, Umeme, The Rockefeller Foundation among other partners with a goal to bring faster connections, increase productive use of electricity, improve grid reliability and stability, reduce grid losses, promote economic growth in rural communities, and improve business profitability.

Campaign update: July 2021

Power for All kicked off the Power for Health Campaign in Burkina Faso in partnership with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). Learn about the upcoming launch of the Access Insights Platform (AIP) data visualization platform in Uganda by Catalyst Off-Grid Advisors. Also, we are excited to welcome two new members to our team.

Fact Sheet: Utilities 2.0 Twaake pilot

It will take over 10 million connections for Uganda to achieve universal access. If grid extension is the sole method of service provision, the required investment would likely be in the range of USD $13 billion at USD $1,300 per connection. Utilities 2.0 integrated energy approach seeks to bring the optimal mix of service levels to unelectrified areas, solving for least-cost electrification in the fastest timeline possible in a given area.

Interview with Kaushik Ramakrishnan: How can insurance unlock smallholder farmers’ access to renewable energy?

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Kaushik Ramakrishnan, an expert working to transform and scale smallholder farming through innovative financial solutions. In support of this year’s UN Food Systems Summit, this podcast is part of a special series focused on the critical link between food systems and decentralized renewable energy, aimed at highlighting game-changing ideas in Africa and Asia that can help ensure sustainable energy for all and improve farmers’ lives.

Interview with Florence Nsubuga: Leading the Utility of the Future in Uganda

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Kristina Skierka, Founder and CEO of Power for All speaks with Florence Nsubuga, Chief Operating Officer of Umeme Ltd., Uganda’s largest distribution utility. Florence is also a team leader of the project Girls for Girls, a forum that empowers women between the ages of 15 and 35 years to become leaders in their own communities. The conversation aims to highlight the work of Umeme along with the opportunity of working together to end energy poverty and achieve universal energy access by 2030.

The Utilities 2.0 Twaake project

The Utilities 2.0 Twaake project is an integrated energy pilot that unites Umeme Ltd, Uganda’s centralized power utility company and several leading Uganda-based distributed renewable energy companies (DREs) including Equatorial Power, EnerGrow and East African Power, to provide affordable, reliable, and clean power for all in what has been envisioned as the utilities of the future. The project is funded by The Rockefeller Foundation and coordinated by Power for All.

Interview with Dhruba Purkayastha: The Future of Distributed Renewable Energy in India

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Divya Kottadiel speaks with Dhurba Purkayastha, who leads the team at CPI in developing innovative finance and policy solutions in support of the government's renewable energy and green growth plans. He is also the director of US India Clean Energy Finance. The conversation centres around CPI’s recent report on the future of distributed renewable energy in India, which outlines the benefits and market potential of India's DRE sector, examines the current policy and institutional landscape and provides tailored recommendations for various stakeholders.

Factsheet: Solarizing Rural Health Centers in India

As of 2019, 4.3% of India’s rural Primary Health Centres (PHCs) did not have access to electricity. While the upfront cost of a solar system is high for most PHCs, displacing diesel generators with a solar system can save 80% of a health centers’ energy costs while bringing many benefits in improved healthcare services.

Campaign update: June 2021

Power for All participated in a stakeholder meeting on Clean Energy Cooling Hubs and spoke at a webinar on Agri-Renewables for the Energy-Water-Food Nexus organized by IRENA. Also, learn about Power for All's PEAK platform, the scheduled UN Food Systems Summit social media takeover and a side event at the Ministerial Thematic Forums of the High-Level Dialogue on Energy.

From the ground up: Translating Compacts to Implementation

Private sector plays a vital role in supporting the energy access ecosystem, including governments, national utilities, and the communities themselves. In the spirit of supporting UN High Level Dialogue on Energy and the call to action to accelerate the end of energy poverty by 2030, Power for All hosted a side event on incorporating distributed renewable energy in national energy sector plans.

Utilities 2.0 Twaake Pilot: New integrated energy approach could deliver universal electrification in Uganda for half the cost, fraction of the time as grid-only

Today, a coalition of global energy sector leaders launched a first-of-its-kind integrated energy pilot in Uganda. Led by Uganda’s largest power utility, Umeme, coordinated by Power for All and funded by The Rockefeller Foundation, the Utilities 2.0 Twaake pilot project unites Umeme Ltd, the centralized power utility company and several leading Uganda-based distributed renewable energy companies (DREs) to provide affordable, reliable, and clean power for all in what has been described as the utilities of the future.

SDG7 Policy Brief: It Starts With Partnership

In support of the 2021 High-Level Political Forum and the High-Level Dialogue on Energy, Power for All contributed to the fourth edition of the SDG7 Policy Briefs, authoring the brief on SDG17: Sustainable Development Through Global Partnerships, and contributing to the briefs on SDG2: Zero Hunger, and SDG8: Economic Growth and Employment. Read and share the full brief on partnership.

Now or never: SDG7 out of reach without decisive action

Despite the remarkable growth in rural electrification over the last decade, the world is falling short of its sustainable energy goals. Lack of access to energy impedes both economic and human development. In an urgent call to action ahead of summits on energy and climate, the co-facilitators of the SDG7 Technical Advisory Group assert that we must radically accelerate the pace of scaling energy access to create a more resilient, equitable and sustainable future.

Interview with Karan Sehgal: Game-changing solutions to spur ‘agripreneurship’ with renewable energy

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Karan Sehgal, leading expert on Energy and Food Systems at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).In support of this year’s UN Food Systems Summit, this podcast is part of a special series focused on the critical link between food systems and decentralized renewable energy, aimed at highlighting game-changing ideas in Africa and Asia that can help ensure sustainable energy for all and improve farmers’ lives.

Going beyond the grid: The future of distributed energy in India

Distributed renewable energy has a major role in enhancing energy access and sustainable development in India. However, it is yet to realize even a small fraction of its potential.

Interview with Raffaella Bellanca of the World Food Program: Energizing the School Feeding Program

In this interview, William Brent speaks to Raffaella Bellanca, leader in access to energy at the World Food Program (WFP), discussing a critical link between school feeding initiatives and decentralised renewable energy. In support of this year’s UN Food Systems Summit, this podcast is part of a special series focused on the critical link between food systems and decentralized renewable energy, aimed at highlighting game-changing ideas in Africa and Asia that can help ensure sustainable energy for all and improve farmers’ lives.

Interview with Magda Moner & Sandor Szabo: Affordability of PV based electricity generation on rural electrification

In this episode, William Brent speaks with Magda Moner and Sandor Szabo, leading researchers in rural development and renewable energy at the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre and co authors of the research paper Mapping of Affordability Levels for Photovoltaic (PV) Based Electricity Generation in the Solar Belt of Sub-Saharan Africa, East Asia, and South Asia. They shed some light on the impact of their research on affordability of solar PV grids in rural electrification and why it is a more sustainable option.

Why aren't we out of business yet?

When we started in 2015, we hoped the world would have achieved universal energy access by now and we would be out of business by our 6th birthday. What has become even more clear during the pandemic, however, is the need for a paradigm shift in how we view collaboration. Our campaign coordinators reflect on their experiences during the crisis, and what it means for the future.

Celebrating Six Years of Power for All

COVID-19 presented an opportunity to show how decentralized renewable energy can accelerate access to better health, jobs, and quality of life through collective and coordinated action. To celebrate our 6th anniversary, this video shows the resourcefulness of working together, as well as the silver linings in the actions we have had to take to enact change.

On the Road to Ending Energy Poverty: Six years of Power for All

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, Anand Prabhu Pathanjali speaks with Kristina Skierka, founder and CEO of Power for All about the campaign’s six-year journey on the road to ending energy poverty.

Powering through the pandemic

Amid the disruptions caused by the pandemic, the energy sector has showcased agility by developing new strategies to help its survival in the new landscape. Leaders have also seized the moment and stayed ahead through strategic planning and change management. Power for All campaign coordinators share their experiences and how we responded to the crisis.

Technology Spotlight: Cold chain for health in India

Every year, 24 million newborn infants need vaccines in India. The efficient practice of cold chain management is therefore key to ensuring that the benefits of vaccination are sustained. Power for All's latest Technology Spotlight highlights essential off-grid solar equipment that is needed in the vaccines’ supply chain.

Solar as a Crop: Making the water-energy-food nexus profitable for smallholder farmers in India

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Shilp Verma, a Researcher at the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), and a leading expert on the nexus of food, water, and solar energy.

Campaign update: May 2021

May 12th, 2021 Power for All chief Campaign Officer William Brent participated in the VEF Virtual Series on food systems to explore how to galvanize political action in the alignment of the energy transition with the food systems transformation, focusing on opportunities in developing countries. The outcomes of the consultations will feed key global events in 2021, including the Sustainable Energy Forum, the High-level Dialogue on Energy, the G20 Forum and the United Nations Climate Conference (COP26).

Interview with Todd Moss: Increasing Energy Access Ambition for Global Development

In this episode, William Brent speaks with Todd Moss, Founder and Executive Director of the Energy for Growth Hub and an expert on energy, finance, and foreign policy, on the recent launch of a new framework called the Modern Energy Minimum, or the Minimum, for short, which calls for a huge jump in ambition for what the global development community considers basic energy access.

Unlocking clean energy to transform food systems

With less than 10 years left to end hunger and energy poverty, the world is far off track, write UN Food Systems Summit special envoy Agnes Kalibata and Power for All CEO Kristina Skiera. 2021 offers a once-in-a-generation opportunity for the food and renewable energy sectors to commit to an ambitious action agenda in service of the SDGs and our shared objectives on climate and a green recovery.

Improving Health Outcomes & Energy Access in Zambia

Africa Clean Energy Technical Assistance Facility (ACE TAF), World Resources Institute (WRI) and Power for All are supporting the Ministry of Health to develop a comprehensive set of activities to help bring electricity to Zambia​'s unelectrified health care facilities.

Global Dialogue: Scaling a clean energy-based food transformation

This dialogue examined the most innovative approaches being implemented today and glean key learnings that can feed into game changing recommendations for the UN Food Systems Summit, COP26 and the High Level Dialogue on Energy.

Investing in Scale: The opportunity at the nexus of food and energy

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Seth Silverman and Morgan DeFoort of Factor[e] Ventures, a builder of companies working at the intersection of food and energy. This podcast is a series highlighting the critical link between food systems and decentralized renewable energy in support of this year’s UN Food Systems Summit.

Fact Sheet: Rural agribusiness opportunities in India

With 65% of its population in rural areas, India remains a highly agricultural country. Yet post-harvest losses amount to approximately US$13 billion annually. Emerging agricultural technologies powered by decentralized renewables show promise for farmers but require new deployment strategies.

Roadmap for Impact: Financing Distributed Renewables Can Support Multiple Development Goals

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Andrew Herscowitz, Chief Development Officer at the US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC), who has been deeply engaged on development issues for more than two decades. Before joining DFC, he was the coordinator of the Power Africa program where he oversaw the addition of 60 million new electricity connections across the continent.

Campaign update: April 2021

Power for All joined the Global Alliance for Climate-Smart Agriculture, participated in a panel discussion to discuss the role minigrids can play in Africa's energy future, hosted an independent dialogue at UN Food Systems Summit, and organized a webinar on electrifying rural clinics in Zambia. Also, learn about a new report launched today by the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy in Jharkhand.

Going Beyond Solar: A Holistic Approach to Powering Rural Healthcare

In this episode of the Power for All podcast, William Brent speaks with Jeff Stottlemyer of CLASP’s Clean Energy Access program. COVID-19 has highlighted a silent humanitarian crisis that has persisted for far too long -- the fact that hundreds of millions of people in Africa and Asia are still served by rural health clinics that have no electricity.

Meet the Unsung Heroes: Women at the forefront of scaling energy access

Women can and do play a critical role in scaling energy access due to their local knowledge and leadership. Power for All is taking action by sharing profiles of exceptional women who are at the forefront of scaling energy access, yet are unknown to the outside world. From Sierra Leone, Nepal to Haiti, meet 21 women making a difference

21 women in energy access you should know about

Women can and do play a critical role in scaling energy access due to their local knowledge and leadership. Power for All is taking action by sharing profiles of exceptional women who are at the forefront of scaling energy access, yet are unknown to the outside world. From Sierra Leone, Nepal to Haiti, meet 21 women making a difference.

Podcast: Women at the frontlines of energy access

In this episode, Divya Kottadiel speaks with Jescinta Izevbigie, Gender Manager at the Clean Cooking Alliance about the progress made and the challenges faced in promoting greater gender equality in the renewable energy sector, and more specifically in the clean cooking space.

Fact Sheet: Rural agribusiness opportunities

Productive use of energy solutions leveraging decentralized renewable energy show promising potential for smallholder farmers to increase yield, however, DREs require different deployment strategies. India’s solar water pump experience provides valuable insights for other emerging technologies.

Campaign update: March 2021

Power for All participated at the Sankalp Africa Summit 2021, the MES Conference 2021 about decentralized electrification, the Vienna Energy Forum series on food systems and was part of a panel discussion on how players in the off-grid solar can collectively achieve commercially viable models for last-mile electrification in West Africa.

Accelerating the global energy transition powered by a young workforce

To be successful, the energy transition will require a generational transition as well. New ideas, new leadership, and new opportunities depend on putting young people at the center of shaping the future of energy systems in Africa and Asia. The time for business-as-usual approaches is ending, as we take the first steps toward the next energy generation and a new legacy.

Youth and clean energy jobs

To be successful, the energy transition will require a generational transition as well. New ideas, new leadership, and new opportunities depend on putting young people at the center of shaping the future of energy systems in Africa and Asia. The time for business-as-usual approaches is ending, as we take the first steps toward the next energy generation and a new legacy.

Podcast: Youth and Clean Energy Jobs

In this episode, Power for All’s William Brent speaks to Tracy Dolan, knowledge lead at EEP Africa, about clean energy innovation and employment, the challenges and opportunities in the sector, and the launch of the Rising Energy Leaders Award.

Fact Sheet: Solar for agro-processing

Solar-powered machinery in off-grid and weak-grid areas could improve food security and create new employment opportunities. However, commercial maturity remains hindered due to high capital costs. Greater deployment of capital is needed.

Campaign update: February 2021

Our CEO has been appointed to the UN High-Level Dialogue on Energy and named as Food Systems Summit champion. Also, learn about the upcoming Utilities 2.0 webinar on lessons from Africa in the latest report from Duke University's Energy Access Project, how we’re participating in India's Unconvention 2021 and promoting multi-stakeholder action in Jharkhand state, and a training session for Energy Catalyst companies on media communications.

Podcast: India’s electrification story

Saubhagya was a success, but more needs to be done; We need a multi-pronged approach; Energy efficiency is an important part of the access story

Top 10 energy access trends to watch in 2021

Our annual energy access trends forecast is out! 2021 is a critical year on many fronts: food systems, healthcare, economic recovery and job creation, climate action, and much more. Decentralized renewables will have a major role to play in all of them. In our annual energy access trends forecast, we consulted multiple sources and identified what are the market movers that will drive progress in energy access finance, technology, policy and capacity.

Power for All’s 2021 top trends for energy access

2021 is a critical year on many fronts: food systems, healthcare, economic recovery and job creation, climate action, and much more. Decentralized renewables will have a major role to play in all of them. In our annual energy access trends forecast, we consulted multiple sources and identified what are the market movers that will drive progress in energy access finance, technology, policy and capacity.

Vaccine cold chain is the beginning, not the end, for rural healthcare

Vaccine cold chain only a first step Refrigation for vaccines is essential to achieve global equity in the fight against COVID, but to ensure universal health care requires service-based models, a standardized and affordable supply chain of off-grid medical devices, and much great inter-sectoral collaboration to power 10s of thousands of unelectrified clinics.

Podcast: Benjamin Attia, Wood Mackenzie, 2021 trends

Energy Transition senior research analyst Benjamin Attia singles out COVID recovery, the rise of C&I, demand-driven integrated energy, the return of infrastructure investors and the emergence of a version 2.0 for our sector in his predictions for 2021.

Podcast: BNEF Takehiro Kawahara on 2021 trends

Streamlined project licensing, business model diversification, a continued rise of strategics in energy access are just some of the emerging trends for 2021 according to Takehiro Kawahara, head of Frontier Power for Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).

Podcast: SEforALL CEO Damilola Ogunbiyi on finance, innovation

In this episode, we speak with Damilola Ogunbiyi, CEO of SEforALL and the United Nations Secretary General Special Representative for SDG7, about financing for energy access, challenges the market is facing and innovations that offer hope for the future.

Campaign update: January 2021

We supported Energy Catalyst to launch a new online energy access innovation community. In Uganda, we participated in Power Forum 2020 while in India, our team co-hosted the first meeting of the Jharkhand DRE collective. Also, learn how we're engaging with the UN Food Systems Summit & the UN High-level Dialogue on Energy, and participating in the ARE Technology & Innovation Forum.

Podcast: The Optimistic Activist: Why 2021 Will be the Year that Solar Wins

With storytelling that stretches across his time living in Guinea-Bissau with the Peace Corps to founding one of the most influential advocacy organizations in the U.S., this podcast featuring Adam Browning of Vote Solar is a great way to kickstart 2021.

Podcast: Integrating energy systems and business models to impact 20 million lives by 2025

In this episode, Gillian-Alexandre Huart, the first CEO of Engie Energy Access, a new energy unit launched by Engie, speaks about creating an integrated business model that can bring together solar home systems, minigrids and national distribution.

How we count energy poverty is broken, requires new framework

Electricity consumption is a misleading measure of energy poverty and SDG7 is significantly farther away than governments and donors currently think, according to a new IIASA framework that measures energy access based on appliance ownership. The framework also shows affordability is a greater barrier than previously thought.

Ten Steps to Improving Rural Health Care in India

Health care and energy coalition release action plan to achieving universal health care powered by distributed clean energy.

Decentralized renewable energy and healthcare

Power for All is working at the center of energy and health sectors to help scale decentralized renewable energy--mini grids and rooftop solar--that can solve these challenges quickly and cost effectively.

Power for Health: India Action Plan

Powering rural health care with distributed clean energy.

Why off-grid technologies are key in bridging the digital divide amid COVID-19

An estimated 1.3 billion pupils have experienced school closures across 186 countries due to COVID-19. Millions of children in Africa and Asia do not have access to digital learning devices or even electricity. As we mark this year’s World Children’s Day, off-grid energy technologies are urgently needed to ensure learning continuity for every child.

Podcast: Advancing the accurate tracking of energy poverty

In this podcast, Shonali Pachauri, Acting Program Director of the Transitions to New Technologies at IIASA in Austria discusses a new framework to measure energy poverty developed by her and her colleagues at IIASA that better aligns with services that people lack rather than merely capturing the absence of connections to sources of electricity.

Digital divide isn't just a technology issue

An estimated1.3 billion pupils have experienced school closures across 186 countries due to COVID-19. Millions of children in Africa and Asia do not have access to digital learning devices or even electricity. As we mark this year’s World Children’s Day, off-grid energy technologies are urgently needed to ensure learning continuity for every child.

Podcast: Renewable energy and the digital divide

The pandemic has exacerbated severe inequalities in developing countries in terms of access to education. We spoke with UNESCO Regional Director for Southern Africa, Prof. Hubert Gijzen about why advances in off-grid solar technologies are catalytic to ending the digital education divide.

Research: Powering Agriculture eBooklet

Agriculture is 2-4 times more effective at reducing poverty than other sectors, according to the World Bank. In this new booklet, we have brought together the clearest data points articulating the direct relationship between decentralized energy access and agriculture productivity and food security.

Campaign Update: November 2020

In Uganda, we hosted a kick-off of a national platform for strengthening the link between food and productive use of energy. Our India team convened a communications workshop with leading journalists in Jharkhand state, and organized the third installment of Energy Catalyst's "Lessons from the Frontline" series. Also, we will participate in Uganda Power Forum 2020 to highlight our integrated electrification initiative.

Fact Sheet: Productive uses of energy

In Uganda, research shows that electrifying agricultural activities can bring additional income for smallholder farmers. However, agro-processing activities are yet to be integrated into distributed renewable energy systems’ load due to various technical and commercial constraints.

From global to local: building energy-smart local food systems post-COVID era

Achieving food security, economic development and poverty reduction remain elusive goals without sustainable energy access. As we mark World Food Day and the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, FAO, Khethworks, Krishi Star, IFPRI and others weigh in on the opportunities for building climate-smart local food systems that grow rural economies and reduce food insecurity.

Food and energy: why bother?

Achieving food security, economic development and poverty reduction remain elusive goals without sustainable energy access. As we mark World Food Day and the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, FAO, Khethworks, Krishi Star, IFPRI and others weigh in on the opportunities for building climate-smart local food systems that grow rural economies and reduce food insecurity.

Podcast: Policy & data for SDG7-SDG2

The correlation between energy poverty and food security is self-evident. But less clear are the steps needed to strengthen this critical nexus. We spoke with Power for All's chief of research Dr. Rebekah Shirley to help frame a complex issue, and explore what kind of action and data are needed to align the two development goals.

The Future of Decentralized Energy in India: Staying Relevant in a "Post-Access" Market

New webinar: In a country that has declared 100% household access to electricity, is there still a role for private decentralized renewable energy companies?

Campaign Update: October 2020

Our Powering Jobs research was featured in IRENA's Renewable Energy and Jobs - Annual Review 2020, and our chief of research joined the launch event. Also, Power for All is a proud partner of the Africa Energy Forum 2020 and a supporting partner of the Financial Times (FT Live) Digital Summits 2020 on Food, and Energy.

Is the G20 serious this time about energy access and SDG7?

New data shows that only 1 of 54 countries in Africa is on track to achieve SDG7. What does the G20 need to do to change that?

Roundtable: Uganda’s integrated approach to electrification

Learn how Uganda is working to achieve an integrated approach to electrification by having utilities work with off-grid renewable systems and distributed energy resources to increase connections. Understand how this will stimulate demand and reduce costs to make mini-grids more economical.

Global Food Systems summit 2020

3 November | 09:00 (GMT) This year’s digital Global Food Systems Summit will shed light on how the global agri-food sector is coming together in the aftermath of the pandemic to balance the need for profit with the need to reduce negative ecological and societal impacts.

Energy Transition Strategies Summit 2020

1 - 2 December | 13:00 (GMT) Policymakers, industry experts, and investors will bring the discussion back to the measures and actions now needed to reach the goal of new zero-carbon, the future of power markets, and the strategies to survive and thrive in the energy transition reshaped by a global pandemic.

Mini-grids and Productive Use: Implications for Gender and Social Inclusion

Join Power for All and Energypedia in this live webinar discussion with mini-grids developers, gender specialist, and a data expert as they talk about the opportunities for synergy between the goals of rural electrification with solar mini-grids, women empowerment, and agricultural transformation in Africa.

Africa Summit 2020

12 October | 09:00 (GMT) With the coronavirus pandemic, Africa has been hit by its biggest external shock since independence. Africa's response has been rightly praised, but the health and economic consequences will be severe. The Africa Summit will cover these most pressing issues.

Off-grid customers struggling: interview with Kat Harrison

85% of off-grid solar customers say their financial situation has worsened since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and one-fifth reported paying for energy as a "heavy burden". We spoke with 60 Decibels director Kat Harrison to understand where things stand, where they are headed and what's at stake.

Beyond COVID, consumer subsidy needed to narrow energy affordability gap

Subsidy key to reaching poorest By 2030, 228 million people worldwide are expected to still be without access to electricity due to affordability and access constraints, and COVID is likely to push that number higher. "Demand-side subsidies," i.e. reducing the cost of power to the poorest of the poor, are essential to avoiding this scenario, concludes ACE TAF.

Donors: where’s your money promised for minigrids?

Donors have deployed just 13% of the US$ 1.6 billion in funds committed to the minigrid sector in Sub-Saharan Africa, and most of that went to technical assistance consultants, not building projects. Where is the other 87%?, asks the African Minigrid Developers Association (AMDA).

Off-grid sector success post-pandemic hinges on shift to new financing models

Off track and under-funded, the goal of universal energy access will only happen if there is much tighter collaboration between funders to unify a highly fragmented finance landscape, while also maintaining a laser focus on results. SEforALL explains why multi-donor RBF is essential for success.

How can we rescue the energy access sector?

A decade of progress in ending energy poverty is in jeopardy because of the coronavisus pandemic. In this special issue, sector leaders from SEforALL, EnDev, Ashden, 60 Decibels, ACE TAF, AMDA and Power for All reflect on not only what's needed immediately to save struggling companies and consumers, but how we set a strategy for success in the coming decade.

Campaign Update: September 2020

Power for All organized a national action roundtable on powering India's rural health clinics and a media workshop in Uganda on agriculture/energy, supported the launch of AMDA's first minigrid industry benchmark report, and hosted two Energy Catalyst peer-to-peer learning sessions. Also, learn about new team members and our participation in upcoming events, including Africa Energy Forum 2020.

Fact Sheet: COVID impact at a glance

Our Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK) compiled a two-page overview of the socio-economic impact of COVID on the energy access sector, and highlights how some countries are responding by leveraging recent advances in decentralized renewables.

World Energy Storage Day

World Energy Storage Day is celebrated on 22nd September every year by various global industry stakeholders, policy makers, think tanks and associations to acknowledge its importance across the globe.

Digital Energy Festival for Africa

Africa Energy Forum 2020 joins forces with the African Utility Week & POWERGEN Africa and Oil & Gas Council’s Africa Assembly to host Digital Energy Festival for Africa.

Investing in clean energy an opportunity for African middle class

By 2021, the green-energy investing will account for 25% of all energy spending, for the first time ever, surpassing spending on fossil fuels, according to Goldman Sachs. Africa's growing middle class could be pivotal to the continent's transition to a sustainable energy future.

The essential role of minigrids in the electrification of Africa: Interview with Aaron Leopold

Africa’s first mini-grids report provides the most comprehensive data on distributed energy minigrids and the sector’s performance to date. Africa Minigrid Developers Association’s CEO explains the essential role of minigrids in the electrification of Africa and spotlights barriers to accelerated growth and what can be done to overcome them.

Who will rescue off-grid renewable energy from coronavirus?

Eight months after coronavirus was first reported, it is clear that donors, multilateral agencies and governments have failed to offer adequate financial relief to the industry providing energy services to tens of millions of rural poor. As a result, the economic impact on the "energy access" sector is a rapidly unfolding crisis.

Summer reading: Our most popular content

To mark our 50th newsletter, Power for All tracked down the content you liked most, and decided it was worth resharing. So if you're looking for some summer reading on integrated energy, job creation, India, etc., here's your chance. And don't forget: we're always looking for compelling stories and data for our next 50 issues, so get in touch!

Campaign Update: July 2020

We joined a webinar on COVID-19's impact on CSOs, worked with WHO on spotlighting the need for rural clinic electrification, and published new articles on unlocking utilities of the future, and creating livelihoods through clean energy and agriculture.

Amps for animals: greening Africa’s livestock sector

The use of energy-saving technologies in Africa’s agricultural sector shows a great deal of promise and has the potential to change the way livestock is raised and managed for the better.

Energy access enters decade of homegrown innovation

Micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are the global engine of innovation and job creation. On MSME Day, learn about the state of energy access entrepreneurship in Africa and Asia, how disruptive ingenuity is accelerating SDG7, and why financial and technical support for innovation must be redoubled post-pandemic.

Scaling energy access through inovation

Micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) are the global engine of innovation and job creation. On MSME Day, learn about the state of energy access entrepreneurship in Africa and Asia, how disruptive ingenuity is accelerating SDG7, and why financial and technical support for innovation must be redoubled post-pandemic.

Energy Access Innovation

Ongoing innovations in the energy sector have played a key role in enabling productive uses of energy resulting in rural economic growth. Here are some of the impactful decentralized renewable solutions providing livelihoods and income-generating opportunities.

Fact Sheet: Mini-grids and Agriculture

Mini-grids productive use of energy in agriculture holds great promise to rural economic development in Africa. However, to ensure long term economic viability, mini-grid developers should build a strong understanding of agricultural practices and adapt project design to the local context.

Podcast: Scaling Low Carbon Innovation

The winners of the 2020 Ashden Awards will be celebrated virtually on 2 July. Harriet Lamb, Ashden CEO, talks to Power for All about the macro-trends that Ashden has seen over time in energy access innovation.

Tech Spotlight: Solar-Powered Cold Storage

Off-grid refrigerators can increase daily income 2.5-fold for MSMEs, on average. See the latest market insights on emerging cooling applications that can unlock agricultural productivity through decentralized renewable energy.

Campaign Update: June 2020

We organized a webinar with Umeme Ltd, Konexa, Rocky Mountain Institute, and Duke University to explore business models for integrated electrification that are being deployed across sub-Saharan Africa. Also, we are excited to welcome two new members to our team.

Utilities 2.0: Better Services, Better Connections

Utilities across countries with low energy access face a number of challenges in delivering on the mandates of affordable, reliable energy for all.

Utilities 2.0: Better Services, Better Connections - Lessons from Uganda and Nigeria

This webinar is an opportunity to engage directly with the researchers and utility experts working in Nigeria and Uganda.

Sierra Leone Case Study: Market Activation

In 2016, Power for All in partnership with the Sierra Leone government launched a market-based Energy Revolution which identified and removed barriers to growing the decentralized renewable energy sector and led to significant impacts.

Data for Energy Access: A PEAK into Power for All's Research Engine

Our PEAK Platform is an inter­ac­tive infor­ma­tion exchange plat­form designed to help aggre­gate and repack­age the best research and infor­ma­tion on energy access into com­pelling data-driven sto­ries. The team behind PEAK shares what the future holds for the Platform and how it is evolving.

Celebrating Collective Action

Since its founding, Power for All has grown to 300+ partners. Together, we have achieved much, but we must redouble our commitment to remove the roadblocks that are keeping us from finally ending energy poverty. This video brings together our coalition's diverse voices from across the globe to inspire us to march on.

Happy Birthday to Us!

Power for All was launched 5 years ago today on May 21, 2015. It's a time to celebrate, but also a time to reflect. We face great disruption in the world, compounded by an unprecedented health crisis. Our CEO Kristina Skierka writes about Power for All's incredible journey, our successes and struggles, and explores the road ahead for the decentralized renewable energy sector.

Podcast: Campaign Alumni Reunion

4 of our original "dream team" -- Christine Eibs Singer, Chiedza Mazaiwana, Aaron Leopold and Charlie Miller -- identify top sector priorities for the next 5 years: consumer subsidy, a public-private "grand bargain", and more. And reminisce about Power for All's early days and its major impact on the fight for universal access.

India Case Study: Moving “Beyond Access"

Using its integrated, evidence-based campaign approach, Power for All has used communications and data since 2017 to shift the narrative on the importance of mainstreaming decentralized renewable energy in India and going “beyond energy access”.

Campaign Update: May 2020

A new dashboard of Power for All's various media channels shows the important role we're playing in communicating about the sector. We also coordinated a call to action to solarize unelectrified health clinics in rural in India that is expanding to Africa, and joined a webinar on the opportunity for solar DC appliances and were featured on a leading energy podcast.

Repurposing the COVID-19 Response for SDG 7

Power for All was launched 5 years ago today on May 21, 2015. It's a time to celebrate, but also a time to reflect. We face great disruption in the world, compounded by an unprecedented health crisis. Our CEO Kristina Skierka writes about Power for All's incredible journey, our successes and struggles, and explores the road ahead for the decentralized renewable energy sector.

Off-Grid Renewable Energy Sector Response to COVID-19

Power for All has created a comprehensive roundup that highlights the response to COVID-19 by the decentralized renewable energy sector, including a new €100 million recovery fund and technical assistance opportunities, but also what steps are being taken by WHO and others to accelerate electrification of rural health facilities.

How community-based education campaigns can increase electricity connections and improve project economics

Placing community awareness campaigns at the core of rural electrification projects can increase connections by 50%, reduce the cost per connection by 24% and significantly improve the overall economics of the projects. This preliminary conclusion emerged as a result of a Community-Based Energy Education Programme led by Energy 4 Impact in Tanzania between October 2018 and December 2019.

Indian Leaders Call for Improvement in Rural Healthcare via Solarization of Clinics

Today, nearly 20 leaders from think tanks, research groups, renewable energy companies, sustainable development organizations, industry associations, and health care services have come together to publish an open letter calling for action, making the case for solarizing all unelectrified sub-centres in rural India, clearly outlining steps needed to get us to that goal.

Powering Health across Africa through COVID-19 and a Changing Climate

Daily power shortages at health clinics and hospitals in sub-Saharan Africa are a counteracting force towards universal health coverage. Decentralized renewable energy solutions are more reliable and much quicker to deploy presenting a huge opportunity for electrification of health facilities across developing rural communities.

COVID-19 & DRE Roundup

Power for All has created a comprehensive COVID-19 round-up that highlights the response by the decentralized renewable energy sector, including new recovery funding and technical assistance opportunities, but also what steps are being taken to accelerate electrification of rural health facilities.

COVID-19: African health officials issue “SOS” for solar power

African healthcare officials describe the urgent need for much greater support for electrifying rural healthcare facilities, calling the situation an emergency because of COVID-19.

Research Summary: Understanding Customer Value

60 Decibels' new impact report, drawn from 35,000 customer interviews, offers a deep dive into why off-grid renewable energy matters and how it can help many more of the world’s energy poor.

Research Summary: Africa Energy Future

To achieve SDG 7, the International Energy Agency says Africa needs to triple the average number of people who gain energy access every year, and this requires governments to make a shift to more renewable energy sources.

Campaign Update: April 2020

CLEAN and Power for All hosted a webinar on COVID-19's impact on the India sector. Look out for an upcoming fireside chat hosted by ET EnergyWorld with Intenational Solar Agency (ISA) head Upendra Tripahty and our CEO Kristina Skierka on the solar sector's future. Also, our team went high/low fashion to liven things up on our pandemic team call. Can you say diva?

Coronavirus is not the only global health crisis. Just ask ½ billion people

An estimated 400 million people depend on health facilities that have no access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. A further 100 million are pushed into poverty every year as a result of health care expenditures. Is coronavirus the real threat to global health?

The other health crisis

An estimated 400 million people depend on health facilities that have no access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. A further 100 million are pushed into poverty every year as a result of health care expenditures. Is coronavirus the real threat to global health?

Fact Sheet: Improving electricity, providing green jobs with renewable energy in Jharkhand

According to a new report by Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy, despite improved access to electricity in India's rural Jharkhand state, affordability, quality and reliability challenges persist. Even when connections are given for free, 10% of the population still choose to stay unconnected.

Campaign Update: March 2020

We launched the Twaake integrated electrification initiative in Uganda, convened a clean cooking workforce focus group in Kenya, and participated in a sustainable energy in Africa webinar. Also, look out for our upcoming webinar with the Malabo Montpellier Panel on mini-grids and agriculture.

Women's energy entrepreneurship has the potential to address SDGs

SELCO has been working with community women in rural India to be on-the-ground business associates for DRE products.

Why gender mainstreaming is important to your renewable energy business

While the renewable energy market in African countries is flourishing, companies that adequately address the needs of women in their business plans are a step ahead of their competitors. Here are the key steps to mainstreaming gender across business operations.

Umeme kicks off a global partnership pilot to identify new approaches to clean energy access in Uganda

Power for All, Umeme Ltd., Makerere University, The Rockefeller Foundation and a coalition of decentralized renewable energy companies launches Utilities 2.0 partnership pilot in Uganda's Mukono District to establish whether appliance financing can accelerate the productive use of electricity to stimulate customer demand and improve grid performance

#Womenergy: the time is now

2020 marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration for women's empowerment. Since then, inroads have been made in the energy access sector, but still women represent only about 25% of formal jobs in the decentralized renewable energy sector. What is needed to create an inclusive energy transition between now and 2030?

Campaign Update: February 2020

Our CEO Kristina Skierka was named as African Power and Energy Elites 2020 and we conducted a masterclass on marketing and communications for sector companies at the India Energy for All Summit 2020. Also learn about our participation at the Global Off-Grid Solar Forum in Nairobi.

Technology Spotlight: Solar Irrigation

Power for All's new technology spotlight provides the latest market insights for emerging applications that unlock productivity through decentralized renewable energy. First up: watering crops.

Podcast: Gender Policy and SDG7

Kenya recently took the bold step of including gender equality in its national energy policy. Sheila Oparaocha, the head of Energia, says it's time for such policies to be adopted by all countries, while also ensuring sustained implementation and accountability.

25 years on: has women’s action agenda impacted SDG7?

2020 marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration for women's empowerment. Since then, inroads have been made in the energy access sector, but still women represent only about 25% of formal jobs in the decentralized renewable energy sector. What is needed to create an inclusive energy transition between now and 2030?

25X25 Electricity Access Acceleration Collaborative Among Top 100 Proposals For MacArthur $100 Million Grant

The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation today unveiled that “25x25: End Energy Poverty Faster,” submitted by the 25x25 Electricity Access Acceleration Collaborative, was one of the highest-scoring proposals, designated as the Top 100, in its 100&Change competition for a single $100 million grant to help solve one of the world's most critical social challenges.

Policy Brief: Action Agenda to Build the Workforce & Skills needed for Universal Energy Access

Power for All released Powering Jobs Census 2019: the Energy Access Workforce, the first annual jobs census measuring employment from decentralized renewables for rural electrification in Africa and Asia. This policy brief draws out key messages and evidence on how employment can be fostered through the decentralized renewable energy sector, and provides recommendations for policy-makers.

Improved access to finance can boost electricity access for rural healthcare in India

Electricity is a basic infrastructure requirement for any healthcare unit. But in developing geographies like India and some East African countries, not all healthcare institutions have access to electricity. As per government records, 50% of sub-centres in some states of India were not connected to the grid. Non-government hospitals that serve the hinterlands often must rely on diesel generators owing to voltage fluctuations and outages that sometimes last for weeks. While renewable energy (RE) technology is available, it requires capital investments which many institutions do not have. Thus, access to clean electricity also includes access to affordable finance.

25x25: Ending energy poverty faster

The 25x25 Electricity Access Acceleration Collaborative will work to bring decentralized renewable energy to 25 emerging economies, with an aim to ending energy poverty in those countries by 2025.

Solar Veteran Adam Browning Joins Power for All Board of Directors

Power for All is pleased to announce that Adam Browning, the co-founder and Executive Director of Vote Solar, has joined its Board of Directors.

Top trends for energy access in 2020

As we enter a new decade, there are just ten years left in which to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals for 2030. The decentralized renewable energy sector has gone through a tremendous amount of innovation, transformation and increasing impact. Here are some of the key trends in the sector that you need to gear up for.

Campaign Update: January 2020

We participated in the launch of the Sustainable Energy Jobs Platform at the IRENA’s 10th General Assembly in Abu Dhabi. Also learn about our participation in upcoming events in India and Nairobi.

Top trends for energy access in 2020

There are just 10 years left to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). What will 2020 hold for the decentralized renewable energy sector as we enter the "decade of action"? Power for All identifies 10 top trends that you need to gear up for in our annual list of predictions.

Research Summary: Deploying 4,000-plus solar storage mini-grids in Nigeria

Rocky Mountain Institute's (RMI) new report showcases a pathway to implementing undergrid mini-grids that has the potential to save electricity distribution companies and communities millions of dollars while dramatically expanding the market for distributed energy resources in Nigeria.

Over 1/3 households in rural Jharkhand dissatisfied with grid supply: report

A new report by the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy (ISEP) highlights the unreliability of power supply in India's rural Jharkhand state. A senior official speaking at the report launch event stated that inefficiencies in the management of power utilities are one of the biggest challenges in ensuring 24x7 power supply.

3 pathways to powering agriculture in Nigeria

Nigeria's post-harvest losses are put at $9 billion, accounting for nearly 70% of global post-harvest loss due to lack of power to drive agro-allied processing. Powering agriculture with decentralized clean energy solutions can play a critical role in reducing food losses and increasing farmers’ revenues.

Decade in review

What a ride. 10 years ago distributed renewable energy was barely on the map. Fast forward a decade later, and we can rightfully feel proud of the progress we have made on SDG7, and the amazing innovation and impact we have achieved. Without question we must maintain a sense of urgency about doing more, faster, but as we begin the 2020s let's take a moment to celebrate our sector.

Powering irrigation in India

Conventional farming that relies only on rainfall hampers food security, off-grid solar water pumps for irrigation can increase crop yields, enhance livelihoods, and foster economic growth.

Decade in review: energy access got “woke”

As we move into the third decade of the 21st century, it is worth taking a moment to reflect on the past 10 years, and appreciate the big impact that small, decentralized renewable energy solutions have made.

Campaign Update: December 2019

Thank you to everyone who contributed to Power for All’s Giving Tuesday campaign! Your generosity has given us a great start to our first-ever fundraising campaign. If you didn’t have a chance to participate in the campaign, there are more days and more ways that you can help us reach our goal.

Podcast: Interview with Stefan Mager (GIZ) and Philipp Blechinger (RLI)

GIZ, Reiner Lemoine Institute (RLI) and the greenwerk recently published the first study to quantify the impact decentralized renewable energy solutions can have in addressing the climate crisis. Distributed energy solutions have largely been absent from the climate discussion, in part because there has been little data. As national governments prepare to update their commitments to emissions reductions as part of the Paris agreement, authors Stefan Mager of GIZ and Philipp Blechinger discuss why distributed clean energy must play a larger role, not just for mitigation, but especially adaptation.

Myanmar mini-grids near 100; market at growth cross-roads

To understand mini-grid utilization trends, Smart Power Myanmar’s Applied Energy Lab is analyzing data on consumer demand for appliances to increase confidence in data, strengthen utilization rates and maximize investor confidence. Here are the key findings.

Decentralized, off-grid solar-powered irrigation systems in the Global South

Solar irrigation pumps are able to boost agricultural productivity, help farmers become more climate-resilient and increase their income, however, the environmental and societal trade-offs from these innovations require further scrutiny.

What does it take to eliminate energy poverty in Africa?

An alternative energy future for Africa is possible and affordable, but only if Governments can make the shift to more renewable energy sources according to a new report from IEA. Here are the key report findings.

Solar irrigation helps farmers battle climate-induced droughts

To advance productivity in Rwanda’s agricultural sector, Energy 4 Impact launched a project that seeks to create the conditions for a sustainable solar irrigation market by increasing awareness, availability and affordability of appropriate technologies among 3,000 smallholder farmers.

3RD AFRICAN YOUTH SDGs SUMMIT

The 3rd African Youth SDGs Summit will coincide with the 5-year journey milestone of the SDGs adoption- and will present a critical point of reflection / turning point towards unleashing the full potential of the youth to deliver the SDGs in the next decade. The Summit will convene young leaders, SDG advocates, students, government officials, development practitioners and world leaders for 3-days of constructive dialogues, debates, awards, networking and exchange of knowledge towards attaining the SDG target by 2030.

C&I solar poised to soar

Distributed renewable energy solutions for commercial and industrial (C&I) businesses have the potential to lower high electricity prices and enhance power supply in Africa and developing Asia. A huge market for decentralized solar and storage is about to take off.

Research Summary: Affordable financing for DRE livelihood appliances

A new CEEW report generates evidence on the impact of solar-powered productive use technologies on the net incomes of end-users. Access to finance remains one of the biggest challenges for small rural businesses, as is awareness among financiers.

Campaign Update: November 2019

Power for All relies on contributions from supporters like you, and this month we have exciting news about our new fundraising campaign. We also joined leaders in Korea for the International Renewable Energy Conference (KIREC), engaged in a session on jobs at Global Green Growth Week, spoke at a meeting in Paris of Club ER, attended the Clean Cooking Forum 2019, and we entered into an editorial partnership with India’s ETEnergyWorld.

Podcast: interview with Norman Moyo, DPA

How can commercial and industrial energy users overcome supply-related issues, reliability concerns, and high energy cost? Distributed Power Africa's CEO explains why C&I solar in Africa should be embraced as a key step in the transition to a mature power market.

Commercial and industrial customers to accelerate the energy transition in Africa

Commercial and industrial (C&I) off-takers can become the main driver for the energy transition in Africa and elsewhere. This is in-line with a global trend that is seeing C&I businesses integrating renewable energy solutions to power on-site operations. Renewables address three issues: greening energy supply, reducing cost and making power more reliable.

Research Summary: Productivity a new frontier of energy access

According to IFC’s Lighting Global market study, the potential sub-Saharan Africa market for solar-powered productivity is growing and can help meet the growing demand for food through increased output and reduced post-harvest losses.

12 (not so) obvious insights about DRE for productive use

Over the last decade, decentralized clean energy solutions have provided basic access to lighting for hundreds of millions of people. The next decade will be about moving beyond lighting to solutions that increase productivity. Here's a list of key issues to watch.

Cool opportunity: tackling food waste

More than 40% of food loss in emerging economies occurs during post-harvest and processing. A reliable cold-chain is crucial for food security and improved livelihoods and distributed renewables have a major role to play.

Research Summary: Ensuring inclusive energy access

Poor People’s Energy Outlook (PPEO) by Practical Action highlights best-practice for bottom-up energy planning, policy, finance, and scaling. Finance and subsidy are key. So is more focus on social uses: street lighting, health, education.

Fact Sheet: Quantifying mini-grid impacts

The impacts of renewable energy mini-grids extend far beyond high quality electricity access, providing rural communities with employment, increases in household savings and micro-enterprise revenue, and improved health, education and safety.

Podcast: interview with Dr. Roberto Ridolfi, FAO

Dr. Roberto Ridolfi, Assistant Director-General, Program Support and Technical Cooperation Department for the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), called for countries to innovate their regulatory approach and reduce red tape and bureaucracy to scale solar-powered cold storage and end food waste.

Campaign Update: October 2019

Our CEO Kristina Skierka participated in The Rockefeller Foundation launch of the Global Commission to End Energy Poverty (GCEEP) during UN Climate Week, which put forward a results-driven roadmap to end energy poverty by 2030. Our PEAK research team meanwhile attended the Smarter Mobility Summit and Financing the Future Summit. Next up: KIREC and Global Green Growth Week.

Powering clean farm-to-fork solutions for a #zerohunger world

More than 40% of food loss in emerging economies occurs during post-harvest and processing. A reliable cold chain is crucial for food security and improved livelihoods. Distributed renewables have a major role to play.

Energy access and economic growth

Power for All talks to BBC Africa about access to reliable electricity as a prerequisite for economic growth and development in sub-Saharan Africa's rural areas

Affordable financing big barrier for solar-powered rural enterprise: new report

Despite being a US$ 50 billion market and an opportunity to increase incomes for rural communities in India, solar-powered productive-use appliances -- for tailoring, food processing, carpentry and others -- are still unable to access end-user finance and therefore unable to scale, according to a new report.

gridCONNEXT 2019

With the rapid adoption of cost-competitive clean energy, energy storage, and electrified transportation – along with new business and regulatory models supporting resiliency, zero-carbon resources, and customer choice – this event offers an unprecedented opportunity to connect with key stakeholders and explore what’s next in the utility sector.

Humanitarian energy is in growing demand

With unprecedented levels of global displacement, there is an urgent need for continued and growing efforts in support of these vulnerable groups, especially in the growing field of humanitarian energy.

South-South for SDG7

To deliver on the global promise of the 2030 Agenda and leave no one behind, a much greater amount of cooperation is needed between countries in the Global South, to ensure mutual support and exchange of best practices, facilitate trade and investment and increase the resilience of emerging economies.

Fact Sheet: Unlocking demand for rural mini-grids

Demand stimulation through appliance financing helps balance the load profile of mini-grids and increase capacity utilization, both keys to their long-term sustainability. US$1.3 billion of appliance financing is needed by 2030.

Research Summary: SDG7 lagging far behind targets

A report tracking progress toward SDG7 says the status quo will leave nearly 3 billion without electricity or clean cooking by 2030. To achieve universal access, the report added, US$55 billion is needed per year.

In Conversation: Upendra Tripathy, ISA

How can South-South cooperation be scaled up in support of the implementation of SDG7? The Director General of the International Solar Alliance shares insights about ISA’s significance in global deployment of distributed solar energy and its progress to date.

OPINION: Franchising the new paradigm for PAYG solar

The pay-as-you-go (PAYG) market for scaling access to solar energy is maturing quickly. Building market share through customer acquisition is no longer the top priority, being replaced by cost efficiency and portfolio management. More savvy funders are now embracing consolidation, thoughtful expansion or franchising. The era of the PAYG start-up is dead.

SDG7 needs greater South-South cooperation

As the United Nations gathers in New York to deliberate climate action and the sustainable development goals (SDGs), including SDG7, we must ask ourselves: how is the Global South best served?

Campaign Update: September 2019

Power for All was part of a strategy session in Geneva of the Sustainable Energy & Jobs Platform, which was first announced in May at the United Nations by IRENA and the International Labor Organization (ILO), and included the World Bank, GGGI, UNIDO, Power for All and the European Commission.

A shift from energy access to development is transforming the decentralized renewable energy market in India: CLEAN

A new report by Clean Energy Access Network (CLEAN) shows that the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector in India continues to see growth in enhancing energy access, especially in rural communities where it is experiencing maximum impact thereby aiding economic and social growth.

Is off-grid solar lighting still relevant in India?

IFC Lighting Asia experts Anjali Garg, Brendon Mendonca and Salman Zahir weigh in on new opportunities amid uncertain times

Future Energy East Africa

Future Energy East Africa is the largest and longest running regional power conference and exhibition in East Africa, making it a well-known and trusted brand. The event boasts both a strategic conference and a large trade exhibition.

Micro-grids reshaping energy in Lebanon

Lebanon suffers from sporadic electricity supply. An aging grid, a lack of domestic fuel supply, and political sectarianism has rendered electricity both intermittent and expensive. Thousands of diesel generators struggle to meet the shortfall but have not been able to keep pace with demand. Today Lebanon finds itself one of the three most indebted countries in the world with one third of its budget deficit going toward fuel subsidies.

Policymakers in Nigerian states report growth in DRE markets, seek increased cooperation

In December 2018, Power for All concluded -long Scaling Off-Grid Energy project which it co-implemented with FHI360 funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Power Africa. The project objective was to reduce the number of un-electrified people in Nigeria by increasing their access to modern, clean and affordable electricity through decentralized renewable energy (DRE) solutions.

Innovation Summit Barcelona 2019

Innovation Summit Barcelona is bringing together the latest innovation and leading-edge technology in energy management and automation with a highly-rated conference program to explore the most influential topics in our industry.

Global Off-Grid Solar Forum & Expo

Organized by GOGLA and The World Bank Group’s Lighting Global Program, the next edition of the Global Off-Grid Solar Forum & Expo will take place in Nairobi, 18 - 20 February 2020.

Off-Grid Energy Access Forum 2019

The Off-Grid Energy Access Forum 2019 is the only conference assessing global investment, market opportunities & technology developments for off-grid energy access at the last mile.

Africa's Agri-preneurs Summit 2019

The Africa's Agripreneurs Summit is a two-day conference bringing together all stakeholders in the African agri-business industry to not only share knowledge on the available market options but also train attendants on key value-addition ventures.

SDG Summit 2019

High-level Political Forum (HLPF) under the 74th Session of the General Assembly: Accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Next up, manufacturing

After a decade of mostly importing from China, a new trend is emerging in Africa and Asia: solar product and mini-grid manufacturers are beginning to set up plants in both continents to expand local markets.

In Conversation: Making solar lamps in Rwanda

Dutch company NOTS Solar Lamps plans to set up a factory in Rwanda to manufacture equipment for home solar kit suppliers. CEO Bart Hartman discusses the reasons why, and plans for future market expansion.

Fact Sheet: Mini-grids set for 60% cost decline

A study by the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) shows how through cost reductions, rural mini-grids can quickly scale as a commercially viable business model to provide access to millions of people and businesses across sub-Saharan Africa.

Research Summary: US$440 per person needed to scale mini-grids

According to a new World Bank report, only US$28 billion has been injected in global mini-grid deployment to date, far from the US$220 billion needed to achieve their full potential.

Local manufacturing: a next frontier for SDG7

Almost without exception, the growth of distributed renewable energy (DRE) in sub-Saharan Africa and developing economies in South and Southeast Asia has been achieved on the back of inexpensive imports from China. That is changing.

Campaign Update: August 2019

Power for All presented a Utilities 2.0 progress report to Ugandan utility Umeme and reviewed business concepts that can be further developed and tested during demonstration phase. Also learn about our participation in upcoming events in London and Nairobi.

Konexa: seeding the integrated utility future

In partnership with DFID, USAID and the Rockefeller Foundation, Shell Foundation (SF) started to identify integrated distribution models predicated on partnerships with existing utilities, public sector backing and a customer value proposition for access to 24/7 reliable power for all, irrespective of location and income levels.

4 insights on what’s next for India rural electrification

In 2019, India announced the completion of the Saubhagya Initiative, its program to provide electricity connections to every village and every home in the country. However, even though millions more are now connected, problems remain (and new ones have emerged), including unreliable supply of power, a lack of workforce capacity for utilities (DISCOMs) to serve an expanded customer base and additional stress of fiscal health.

Scaling mini-grids: what African countries can learn from each other

It is estimated that by the year 2030, mini-grids will be providing electricity to as many as 500 million people around the world – a huge boost from the current 47 million people across 134 countries who are served by about 19,000 mini-grids. While most of the current mini-grids are deployed in Asia, Africa has the largest share of the 210,000 planned mini-grids by 2030.

World Bank: main grid subsidy up to 2x mini-grids

In a new report, the World Bank concluded that subsidies per connection for small, private rural utilities called mini-grids are often significantly less than subsidies received by the large, public main grid.

Jobs & Energy Access

Leading business publication Forbes spotlights how rural electrification in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia is not only creating hundreds of thousands of energy sector jobs, but even more jobs in the communities gaining access to power for the first time.

Campaign Update: July 2019

Power for All and its partners officially launched Powering Jobs Census 2019: the Energy Access Workforce, the first annual survey measuring employment from decentralized renewables for rural electrification in Africa and Asia.

Jobs Census Webinar

Dr. Rebekah Shirley, lead researcher for the Powering Jobs Census, gives a presentation of the key findings, and answers questions in this recording of a webinar hosted by Clean Energy Solutions Center (CESC).

Forbes: Renewable Energy Provides Growing Source Of Skilled Jobs For Africa And Asia

James Ellsmoor writes on how delivering rural electrification using distributed renewable energy (DRE) can put a serious dent in joblessness, in particular for youth and women.

Powering Jobs Census 2019: Focus on Nigeria

Download the Powering Jobs Census 2019: Focus on Nigeria, to understand the growing employment opportunity within the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector, and within the communities gaining access to electricity for the first time. In Nigeria, direct, formal DRE jobs are expected to boom more than 10 times by 2022-23.

Powering Jobs Census 2019: Focus on India

Download the Powering Jobs Census 2019: Focus on India, to understand the growing employment opportunity within the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector, and within the communities gaining access to electricity for the first time. In India, direct, formal DRE jobs are expected to double to by 2022-23.

Powering Jobs Census 2019: Focus on Kenya

Download the Powering Jobs Census 2019: Focus on Kenya, to understand the growing employment opportunity within the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector, and within the communities gaining access to electricity for the first time. In Kenya, direct, formal DRE jobs are expected to grow 70% by 2022-23.

First Annual Energy Access Jobs Census Released, Showing Large Employment Opportunity

Decentralized renewables have the potential to directly create up to 17,000 formal and 30,000 informal jobs in Kenya by 2022-23

Renewable Energy Jobs in Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia 2019 | Power for All

Download the Powering Jobs Census 2019: The Energy Access Workforce, to understand the growing employment opportunity in the decentralized renewable energy sector in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia, and for the communities gaining access to electricity for the first time. Learn more about the Powering Jobs campaign at powerforall.org/poweringjobs

Research Summary: Jobs, decentralized renewables, and the energy transition

In late 2018, Power for All conducted the first comprehensive jobs census of the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector, covering pico-solar appliances, solar home systems, standalone and grid-tied commercial and industrial systems, mini-grids and productive use applications such as solar water pumps. This summary synthesizes key findings in the three countries surveyed -- India, Kenya and Nigeria.

Powering Jobs Census 2019

Unemployment in the countryside of Sub-Saharan Africa and developing Asia is worsening, while nearly 1 billion rural, mostly agrarian people still lack electricity. Providing energy access via decentralized renewables to these communities could turn a double challenge into a huge job creation opportunity.

First Annual Energy Access Jobs Census Released, Showing Large Employment Opportunity

Decentralized renewables have the potential to directly create up to 190,000 formal, and 210,000 informal jobs in India by 2022-23.

First Annual Energy Access Jobs Census Released, Showing Large Employment Opportunity

Decentralized renewables have the potential to create up to 52,000 direct, formal and 24,000 informal jobs in Nigeria by 2022-23.

Mini-grid moment...um?

A group of 12 leading impact and energy investors called for donors to ramp up support for mini-grids in Africa, while 10 Africa governments made a similar appeal. Long an under-performing industry, mini-grids may finally be reaching an inflection point, but a huge finance gap persists. What's needed?

Fact Sheet: DRE Finance Gap

A huge shortage of capital for the sector remains, with just a decade left to achieve SDG7. And most money is concentrated in a small number of companies while ignoring most high-impact countries. What solutions are needed?

Mini-grids show momentum, but donors largely missing

After almost a decade of struggling to hone business models, access finance and gain political backing, mini-grids appear to finally be ready for scale.

Campaign Update: June 2019

It’s hard to believe that Power for All launched nearly 5 years ago. Now at 10,300 followers on Twitter, we continue to add around 300 followers per month, and our average monthly impressions are hovering around 300,000.

Research Summary: Nigeria Mini-Grid Opportunity

RMI highlights why Nigeria is the biggest mini-grid show on earth, with a US$8 billion annual revenue opportunity. It has the potential to electrify 14% of its population by building 10,000 mini-grids by 2023.

Risk-Pooling Initiative Strives to Unlock Commercial Investment in African Mini-Grids

Green Aggregation Tech Enterprise aims to prepare off-grid energy financing for a self-sustaining future in Africa that involves all types of funding, including commercial lending.

Leading investors “strongly encourage” donors to provide more effective support for mini-grids in Africa

Diverse group of investors with over $2.0 billion under management say well-designed Results-Based Financing (RBF) for mini-grids will accelerate access to electricity for 600 million people in Africa, and unlock significant private capital.

Investor Position Paper: Unlocking Private Capital for Mini-Grids in Africa

For mini-grids to attract private investment, they require consistent, reliable, and rapidly deployable Results-Based Financing (RBF) programs. This paper was prepared by the signatory investors to present a unified message of support for these RBF programs to donors.

Mini-grids: catalyzing investment with results-based finance (RBF)

Less than 15% of $1.7 billion of investment in off-grid energy between 2010-2018 went to mini-grids. Yet $10-25 billion is needed annually to bring electricity to 450 million people by 2030 via renewable energy mini-grids. Investors believe the missing catalyst to unlock private capital is results-based finance (RBF).

African development leader Dr. Kandeh Yumkella joins Power for All board of directors

Former head of UNIDO, SEforALL a recognized international expert on sustainable energy and agriculture

Re-imagining utilities to end energy poverty

How can decentralized and centralized, public and private solutions work better together to end energy poverty faster? Power for All and a group of leading energy companies recently launched the Utilities 2.0 initiative to find out. The head of Uganda's largest utility Umeme explains why.

Infographic: 3 Keys to Integrated Energy

Building the utility of the future requires three immediate actions: mandating national integrated energy planning, establishing policies and regulations that provide certainty, and creating a level playing field.

Campaign Update: May 2019

A series of policy briefs were released recently by UNDESA at a High-Level Dialogue on the Implementation of the United Nations Decade of Sustainable Energy for All 2014-2019: A Mid-Point Review. Power for All’s CEO Kristina Skierka joined a panel to discuss the interlinkages between SDG7 and other other SDGs under review this year (SDG 4, SDG 8, SDG 10, SDG 13, SDG 16 and SDG 17). Power for All collaborated closely with IRENA and ILO to develop a policy brief on energy and jobs (one of 16 policy briefs related to SDG7), which were released at the event.

Reimagining utilities as a way to end energy poverty

If the world is to provide electricity to all by 2030, utilities and off-grid renewable energy providers must join forces

Amid renewed DISCOM woes, new data points to mini-grids for last-mile electrification in India

Should another ongoing cycle of utility bailout-bust and the election see a revival of India’s stalled mini-grid policy?

News Release: Utilities 2.0 coalition unveils vision for utility of the future in low energy access countries; announces 1st demonstration

Power for All, Umeme Ltd., The Rockefeller Foundation and a coalition of decentralized renewable energy companies target win-win-win business models that accelerate electricity access, while benefiting utilities, the private sector and energy-poor consumers.

Universal Renewable Energy Access: The Utilities of the Future

Utilities 2.0: Integrated Energy for Optimal Impact explores how working together, centralized and decentralized energy can transform their national energy systems into robust networks that deliver reliable, affordable, universal access for all.

Graphic: DRE Equation

1+ billion people should not have to wait for energy access.

Transforming rural electrification with remote monitoring

The remoteness and complexity of off-grid energy systems can pose substantial operational challenges. Implementing remote monitoring and management offers concrete cost reduction and reliability. IoT can enable electrification across rural regions​ with smart, renewable energy to support economic development.

First Annual Energy Powering Jobs Census Released, Showing Large Employment Opportunity

Power for All has released the first annual jobs census measuring employment from decentralized renewables for rural electrification in Africa and Asia, Powering Jobs Census 2019: the Energy Access Workforce.

Customer Perception in India

More rural customers in India prefer electricity supplied by mini-grids than state grids, while two-fifths of consumption comes from agriculture, according to Smart Power India (SPI).

Research Summary: Under-the-grid opportunity

Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) found that under-the-grid areas in Africa offer a multi-billion dollar opportunity for mini-grids and huge savings for state distribution companies.

Campaign Update: April 2019

Power for All and a group of leading power companies will be announcing the campaign's latest Call to Action, Utilities 2.0: Integrated Energy for Optimal Impact, at the African Utility Week in Cape Town on May 14-16.

Harvesting energy means breaking down silos

2 billion smallholder farmers are among the most underserved populations in the world. Better access to clean energy has the ability to transform agriculture and speed econonic development, says Factor[e], but financial, operational, technical, and policy barriers need to be overcome.

Mini-grids: powering the next green revolution

Our latest video takes a closer look at the potential for decentralized renewables like mini-grids to unlock an explosion of agriculture productivity and jobs in Sub-Saharan Africa and developing Asia.

Harvesting energy means breaking down silos

2 billion smallholder farmers are among the most underserved populations in the world. Better access to clean energy has the ability to transform agriculture and speed econonic development, says Factor[e], but financial, operational, technical, and policy barriers need to be overcome.

MESSAGING GUIDE: MINI-GRIDS

Based on input from a diverse set of sources including the Mini-Grids Partnership (MGP) steering committee and the Africa Mini-grid Developers Association (AMDA), this guide is a reference tool to help various stakeholders understand the importance of the global mini-grid sector. With this guide, sector stakeholders, including businesses, funders, government and civil society, should be able to easily discuss mini-grids at a high level or in-depth, using clearly sourced evidence.

Mini-grids: "outside-in" electrification

Our latest video looks at how micro-grids have successfully helped countries bring electricity to their farmers and rural industries. Examples include the United States, Cambodia, and most recently Nigeria.

Beyond access: elevating the DRE narrative

It's time for our sector story to evolve, and we need your help. Acceptance for decentralized renewables has grown, and now we need new focus and new champions to go beyond access. Which is why we are redoubling our story-telling and content co-creation efforts.

Beyond access: elevating the DRE narrative

The decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector is entering a new phase, one that goes “beyond access” and instead focuses on co-benefits, dividends, outcomes, improved livelihoods, productive uses -- whatever term you prefer -- that both satisfy consumer aspirations, but also power rural economies.

Fact Sheet: DRE-SDG nexus in Nigeria

Decentralized renewable energy can have a major impact on SDGs in Nigeria, when looking at education, business productivity or emissions. Nearly 2/3 of medium- and small-enterprise in off-grid and weak grid areas can reap the rewards of DRE.

Fact Sheet: DRE for children

The value of decentralized renewable energy has never been greater in helping to make lives better for children: half a million premature deaths occur for children under 5 due to inadequate energy; 65% of sub-Saharan African primary schools are without power.

Energy access means jobs in Zambia: new data

Governments and donors in sub-Saharan Africa that adopt coordinated approaches to electrifying rural communities using distributed renewables can count on meaningful job creation, according to recent data from REEEP in Zambia.

NGO partners join hands in 25x25 collaborative to accelerate market transformation

Four organizations committed to accelerating universal electricity access – Hivos/ENERGIA, Power for All, Practical Action, and SNV Netherlands Development Organisation – recognize that the level of ambition and urgency for achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 is far from what's needed to deliver modern, affordable, sustainable and reliable energy for all before 2030.

Diesel is dying in rural economies: data

Long the only choice for off-grid, under-the-grid and back-up power generation in emerging economies, diesel is now on a death watch with the rise of renewable-powered machinery, growing solar adoption by rural enterprises, and business and finance innovation. That means billions of dollars saved and gigatons of emissions avoided.

In conversation: Thomas Gottschalk, A2EI

This new non-profit from the founders of Mobisol is looking to support standalone solar and mini-grid innovation that will become the "generator killer" and finally get rid of diesel. What are the applications that will play the biggest role and where?

Fact Sheet: Energy subsidy in India

Diesel is not the only fossil fuel being displaced by decentralized renewables. Kerosene is also fading. Yet governments continue to prop up dirty sources of energy despite clear benefits of switching. In India, data from IISD show that decentralized renewables made up only 1.2% of renewable energy subsidies and 0.12% of total energy subsidies, amounting to just US$27.6 million in 2017.

Diesel is dying in rural economies: data

Long the only choice for off-grid, under-the-grid and back-up power generation in emerging economies, diesel is now on a death watch with the rise of renewable-powered machinery, growing solar adoption by rural enterprises, and business and finance innovation. That means billions of dollars saved and gigatons of emissions avoided.

Campaign Update: February 2019

Power for All updated its website last year with the goal of improving our ability to spotlight more of the great stories coming out of the decentralized renewables sector. With that in mind, we are actively seeking to co-create content with you.

Research Summary: Mini-grids in Ethiopia

In the fifth of our mini-grid market assessment series, we highlight the US$639 million opportunity in Ethiopia as quantified by the African Development Bank's Green Mini-Grid Market Development Program. 16.2% of the 100 million population are best served by mini-grids.

Transitioning energy, creating green jobs in Myanmar

Mee Panyar is helping villages in rural Myanmar transition from diesel to solar power through training programs to support electricians operating mini-grids. This decreases household electricity prices by up to 50%, reduces carbon emissions by 60%, and creates opportunity for productive uses.

Wanted: #1000solutions... Apply Now

The Solar Impulse Foundation, started by Dr. Bertrand Piccard following his successful round-the-world solar flight, has launched the #1000solutions challenge: to select, label and promote 1000 clean, efficient and profitable solutions to fight climate change.

40% of rural consumers dissatisfied with state grid: India report

Despite huge progress toward 100% electrification in India, a new study finds the reality quite different, with a huge need to focus on customer satisfaction

Saubhagya Scheme: Millions Remain Without Electricity

Despite progress, India’s rural electrification problem remains far from resolved. There are likely tens of millions of people without electric light at home, and some of the gains so far could be reversed when the harsh reality of irregular and unpredictable electric billing hits India’s rural poor.

Top trends for energy access in 2019

2019 offers a range of tantalizing, pivotal possibilities for the distributed renewable energy sector. Power for All takes a look into our crystal ball and makes its annual predictions for some of the top trends to watch in the coming months.

Top trends for energy access in 2019

Power for All gathers together various predictions and trends that we see unfolding for electricity access and the distributed renewable energy sector in 2019.

Research Summary: DRC Mini-Grid Market

Home to 80 million people, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is the largest and fourth most populated country in Africa, but also the least electrified. SEforALL Africa hub in conjunction with the African Development Bank published a market assessment as part of the Green Mini-Grid Market Development Programme (GMG MDP) document series. Here we highlight the key messages.

In Conversation: Ben Attia, Wood Mackenzie Analyst

The head of off-grid energy for advisory firm Wood Mackenzie makes his predictions for 2019, including an increased role for strategics, an "identity crisis" for the sector, and perhaps less private capital.

Campaign Update: January 2019

Power for All and partners kicked off the Decentralized Renewable Energy Data Network (DREDN), further advanced the Utilities 2.0 pilot in Uganda, hosted #PoweringJobs focus groups in 3 countries.

Acumen: Mind The Pioneer Gap

Despite an increase in investment for distributed renewable energy companies over the past 5 years, most of it went to a handful of companies and 93% say they are still trapped in a "Pioneer Gap" between seed and commercial capital. More patient capital is needed. This is according to a recent report, Accelerating Energy Access: The Role of Patient Capital, from campaign partner Acumen.

Stories Wanted: Let us shine a spotlight on you

Power for All is looking to spotlight the great work our partners are doing through story-telling. It can be visual -- through video, data visualization, or photo essays. It can be personal profiles. Stories about technology or business innovation. Or tales of improved livelihoods and jobs. You name it, we're probably interested.

2018: Top Energy Access Tweets

Approaching 10,000 followers (with average 300,000 impressions per month), Power for All’s Twitter account is a window into the topics that most interest the distributed renewable energy sector. Twitter measures “Top Tweets” based of engagement and impressions. The themes that generated the biggest response in 2018? Mini-grids, and the jobs opportunity of energy access. Other topics of interest: consumer demand, market development, and data.

2 Keys to Scaling Energy Access

Distributed renewables play an increasingly important role in promoting energy access, already accounting for 6 gigawatts of capacity in the developing world, with an expectation of providing over 60% of new electricity connections in Sub-Saharan Africa by 2030. New analysis in Escaping the Energy Poverty Trap shows that national governments need two things to succeed in creating markets for distributed renewables: 1) institutional capacity and 2) local accountability mechanisms.

Mini-grids boost women entrepreneurship; up to 11x income rise

A new study in Ghana by Power Africa and Energicity, the parent company of solar mini-grid developer Black Star Energy (BSE), has revealed significant impact of electricity access on women-owned businesses and incomes, including helping them move from extreme poverty to near middle class status, while allowing them to stay in their rural communities.

Nigeria taskforce ends initial phase, reviews accomplishments and future goals

Nigeria’s Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) Taskforce, which aims to accelerate modern electricity access initiatives by tackling the most pressing industry challenges, met on November 12, 2018 to review the success of the taskforce since its creation in February 2018.

Mini-Grids: Myanmar’s Next Decentralized Technology Revolution

Decentralized electricity generation systems such as mini-grids avoid the high cost of bringing electricity long distances by constructing small-scale power plants right next to the point of consumption.

Campaign Update: November 2018

Power for All is hiring for several openings, including operations, development, grant management and country-level coordinators. We also successfully launched the #PoweringJobs campaign, and continued to advance the sector forward in Nigeria.

Electrifying Africa's Labor Market

Energy access offers huge employment potenital, up to 1/5 of the 25 million jobs needed in Africa over the next decade. But only if a large and growing skills gap is closed. Mugo Kabiti of M-KOPA and Gilles Vermot Desroches of Schneider Electric make the case for action.

New analysis indicates grid extension poor fit for rural poor

Should private off-grid solar companies continue to expand their user base? Or is the grid better suited for poor, rural consumers? [Spoiler Alert: Yes and No]

Infographic: Help Wanted

10.3 million renewable energy jobs exist globally. Yet just 76,000 are in Africa, where they are most urgently needed.

Middle-Income Countries Big Winner from Off-Grid Energy. Who’s Next?

As demonstrated in by new data from IRENA, off-grid renewable electricity has grown tremendously across the world over the last decade, but growth was very uneven. Why was off-grid successful in some places and not others?

Six Nuclear Reactors Worth of Off-Grid Renewable Energy Deployed in Last 10 Years—But Sub-Saharan Africa Lagging

The deployment of off-grid electricity is one important pathway toward reducing energy poverty. Off-grid technology can meet basic needs at an increasingly affordable cost and, when powered by renewable sources, in a clean manner. Yet until recently, we knew little about the current state of affairs: how much capacity do off-grid systems currently provide? And where?

Electrifying Africa’s Labor Market

With more than 600 million people lacking access to electricity in Sub-Saharan Africa, off-grid renewable energy has the potential to transform economies and lift millions out of poverty. But green power can do something else, too: it can help solve the continent’s mounting unemployment crisis. A perspective by Mugo Kibati of M-KOPA and Gilles Vermot Desroches of Schneider Electric.

Forging Better Lives with Solar in India

Blacksmiths and other craftsmen in rural India—with the help of distributed solar power, local financing yet minimal innovation—are creating a path to better livelihoods with the support of SELCO Foundation.

Women #PoweringJobs in Senegal

Over 100 years ago, women pushed for the right to vote. Today, they are pushing for the right to energy. Nowhere is this more important than in West Africa, where 100 million women and girls live in energy poverty.

CNBC Africa: "How renewables could help solve Africa’s job crisis"

CNBC Africa highlights the #PoweringJobs campaign, spotlighting that distributed renewable energy solutions like home solar and green mini-grids can help solve Africa's job crisis.

Nigeria Taskforce Seeks New Ways to Confront Energy Access Challenges

Five key barriers are preventing the scaling of off-grid renewable solutions in Nigeria: 1. tariffs and duties, 2. consumer awareness, 3. collaborative data sharing, 4. end-user payments and 5. standardization and certification.

Fact Sheet: Jobs and Decentralized Renewable Energy

Globally, the off-grid renewable energy industry is expected to create at least 4.5 million direct jobs by 2030.

#PoweringJobs Campaign Overview

#PoweringJobs is a global campaign to ensure the required energy access workforce exists, and has the necessary skills to achieve sustainable energy for all. Women and youth are a core focus of this advocacy campaign.

#PoweringJobs Launched to Build Energy Access Workforce

Global campaign to create employment-ready workforce to scale distributed renewable energy solutions in emerging economies in Asia and Africa; women and youth are key focus for millions of expected jobs.

What we mean by “productive use”—and why it matters.

Productive use is one of the hottest buzzwords in the world of energy access today, increasingly used by development banks, industry leaders, and civil society organizations (among others!) as the work to deliver energy to 1 billion people evolves beyond just lighting. But what does “productive use” of energy actually mean?

Fact Sheet: Global Off-Grid Appliance Market

Off-grid appliances are appliances that can operate in resource-constrained settings, or that are designed to operate in off-grid energy systems such as low-voltage DC solar home systems or on AC/DC mini-grids. In this joint CLASP, Energy for Access Coalition and Power for All synthesis, we draw on three new reports to provide the most up-to-date data on off-grid appliances – their demand, markets, impacts and consumer behavior.

An Introduction to the Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK)

PEAK is a an inter­ac­tive plat­form designed to help aggre­gate and repack­age the best research and infor­ma­tion into com­pelling data-​​​driven sto­ries for the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector.

In Conversation With Abhishek Jain, CEEW

A new report by India's leading energy access research organization looks at how to boost rural incomes through innovation in distributed clean energy, and the $50 billion opportunity for new livelihood appliances.

Getting Productive

"Productive use" is one of the hottest buzzwords in the world of energy access today, but what does it actually mean? Or more importantly, what should it mean? Jeff Stottlemyer of CLASP offers a refreshing perspective as our sector evolves beyond just lighting.

Campaign Update: October 2018

Power for All and its partners are firing on all cylinders, kicking off exciting Utilities 2.0 work in Uganda, pushing a "25x25" market activation concept forward at IOREC and ECOWAS, launching an energy access jobs campaign, and moving the needle in Nigeria. And did you miss PEAK’s webinar? So much to catch up on.

Is SDG7 Set To Converge?

Scaling solar induction stoves can help solve access to both electricity and clean cooking. Are we finally on the cusp of a great convergence that brings together the two tracks of SDG7? Power for All explores the opportunity.

SDG7: is a “great convergence” coming?

SDG7 — affordable, modern, reliable, sustainable energy for all — has two parts: providing access to electricity (for 1 billion people) and clean cooking (for 3 billion). But the two have always been on parallel tracks. It's time for them to come together

In Conversation with Dr. Chetan Singh Solanki

A team at the India Institute of Technology (IIT) in Mumbai has pioneered a new solar electric cookstove for India. Can it bring the two sides of SDG7—clean cooking and electricity access—together? Power for All spoke with team leader, Dr. Chetan Singh Solanki, about a village pilot under way, and the potential to scale.

Campaign Update: September 2018

Nigeria’s Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) Task Force which was set up under the Scaling Off Grid Energy (SOGE) project of the USAID and Power Africa and implemented by Power for All met on September 18th to discuss actionable steps that will accelerate the sector.

Research Summary: Mini-Grid Bankability

The Energy and Environment Partnership Trust Fund has financed 43 mini-grid projects in Africa, and recently published a report explaining that infrastructure financing and regulatory environments are the main ‘make-or-break’ contributors to mini-grid bankability.

Research Summary: A mini-grid market opportunity assessment of Burkina Faso

The African Development Bank has developed Mini-Grid Market Opportunity Assessments for a number of Sub-Saharan African countries. In this second summary, we highlight the potential of mini-grids in Burkina Faso

Video: Solar Electric Cooking

With batteries and solar mini-grids or rooftop PV, induction stoves could offer a one-stop solution for both electricity access and clean cooking. See some examples of what's being tried and learned in Africa

Webinar Series: Tutorial for using the Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK)

Power for All launched the Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK), a new interactive knowledge platform designed to curate, organize, synthesize and transform large, growing bodies of decentralized renewable energy data into “digestible,” shareable and useable information.

The bankability of mini-grid business models is improving but regulation remains the biggest challenge.

Energy and Environment Partnership Trust Fund (EEP Africa) has financed 43 minigrid projects in 10 countries in Southern and Eastern Africa. Their recently published report Opportunities and Challenges in the Mini-grid Sector in Africa draws lessons from the EEP Africa portfolio and explains that infrastructure financing and regulatory environments are the main ‘make-or-break’ contributors to mini-grid bankability.

4 keys to unlock cheap micro-grid finance

To improve lender confidence and increase project financial attractiveness, micro-grid developers should reduce the risks of non-steady cash flows through four short-term actionable strategies

4th IOREC Coming to Singapore

This year, the 4th International Off-Grid Renewable Energy Conference (IOREC), organised by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), will be the global platform dedicated for sharing experience and best practices about design and implementation of enabling policies, tailored financing schemes, innovative business models and technology applications for stand-alone and mini-grid systems. The 4th edition of IOREC will be held in Singapore on 31 October - 1 November 2018, during the Singapore International Energy Week (SIEW), 2018 as part of Asia Clean Energy Summit – Conference and Exhibition. With over half a billion people in Asia are still without access to electricity, the synergy with the ASEAN Ministers on Energy Meeting, chaired by Singapore in 2018, and with the Asia Clean Energy Summit, will greatly help highlight the role decentralised renewable energy solutions can play in electrification strategies in the region and beyond, as well as the role of off-grid renewable energy in achieving several of the Sustainable Development Goals. The Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE) will organise an Exhibition in parallel with the Conference. The Exhibition is meant to give the private sector the opportunity to present its products & projects and showcase the technologies & know-how at the forefront of off-grid renewables.

Climate-Proofing Electricity Access

Ahead of global climate discussions starting next month, we must commit to building energy systems in emerging economies that are resilient and secure, and this means putting decentralized renewables front and center, argues investor Alexia Kelly.

Mini-Grids: Key to Ending Energy Poverty

Private utilities called mini-grids have the potential to bring access to electricity to 450 million people by 2030, helping to end energy poverty while also laying the foundation for rural economic growth in Sub-Saharan Africa and many others regions and countries.

A mini-grid market opportunity assessment of Cameroon

SEforAll Africa hub in conjunction with the African Development Bank recently published a Mini-Grid Market Opportunity Assessment of Cameroon as part of the Green Mini-Grid Market Development Programme (GMG MDP) document series.

Electricity access must be climate resilient

Given the speed and scale with which climate impacts are being felt around the globe, emerging economies—or any economy for that matter—no longer have the luxury of planning for their energy systems as though climate change doesn’t matter and won’t impact it in fundamental ways.

Campaign Update: August 2018

With the support of the Rockefeller Foundation, Power for All organized an intimate gathering of energy access leaders in July. At the event were representatives of African, Asian and European utilities and government agencies (energy ministries, rural electrification agencies, etc), private sector companies engaged in residential solar and mini-grids, and funders and researchers, all keen to begin a discussion on the future of power utilities in low energy access countries, and to explore ways to pilot new models of electricity services that integrate centralized and decentralized solutions.

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewables – Supporting Climate Resilience and Adaptation

DRE can help communities to adapt to a fast changing global climate and become more resilient in the face of such disasters. Brazil and Zambia--both countries that rely heavily on large hydropower--experienced constraints on electricity supply due to severe droughts in 2015. The problem is not restricted to hydropower since thermal-electric power plants also consume large amounts of water for generation.

Research Summary: A mini-grid market opportunity assessment of Cameroon

SEforAll Africa hub in conjunction with the African Development Bank recently published a Mini-Grid Market Opportunity Assessment of Cameroon as part of the Green Mini-Grid Market Development Programme (GMG MDP) document series.

S-@ccess International Conference on Solar Technologies & Hybrid Mini Grids to improve energy access

The main objective of the conference is to provide an opportunity for an exchange between practitioners from the industry, academia and development institutions working in the field of decentralized energy. The conference will cover technical, business and management aspects of solar technologies and mini grids with the aim of sharing experiences, learning from each other and networking. The challenge of energy access for all is of enormous magnitude and only be achievable, if a smart mix of different existing and innovative technologies and approaches is applied according to the needs and the economic potential of the people. In the last years, a multitude of organizations and companies has gained value experiences with the dissemination of solar lanterns, plug-and-play systems and solar home systems either in form of cash sales or Pay-as-you-go approaches. Several international organizations have also tried to scale up installation of solar and hydro mini-grids in rural areas with differing degrees of success. Other organizations focused on solar thermal systems or the development of energy efficient equipment allowing the productive use of DC electricity. The Conference will provide a forum where experts from different disciplines can discuss how universal energy access can be achieved in the most efficient way. The conference will invite acknowledged experts to provide an overview about the status in different technology areas and give room to participants, which want to present their results from scientific research or experiences from the fieldwork.

Turning Data Into Insight

Key influencers of energy access lack information about modern distributed technologies, policies and markets. To help bridge this gap, Power for All has launched a new data platform, with a mission to make data accessible, understandable and useable by critical energy influencers.

Campaign Update: July 2018

Power for All wrapped up its DRE101 trainings under the Scaling Off-Grid Energy (SOGE) project with two trainings in the Nigerian cities of Kano and Ibadan. The workshops were targeted at policymakers from the North-West and South-West states respectively.

In Conversation with Dana Rysankova, World Bank

She provides strategic and operational guidance to the World Bank’s Energy and Extractives Global Practice to scale-up the bank’s energy access interventions. In addition to this role, Dana is coordinating energy access activities at the World Bank’s Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP), where among other things she is the Program Manager for Lighting Global. Dana also leads a global initiative for applying the Multi-Tier Framework for tracking energy access in the context of the Sustainable Energy for All and SDG7 goals.

Fact Sheet Booklet: Powering the SDGs

Fact Sheet Booklet: Powering the SDGs Generated by PEAK, a new booklet brings together the clearest data points on the Energy Access Dividend, looking at the direct relationship between decentralized energy access and some of the most critical SDGs.

Fact Sheet: Mini-Grids in India: Mini-Grid Finance and Business Models

India has seen rising investment in mini-grids, which can help accelerate India’s universal energy access goals. In our second fact sheet on India mini-grids, we explore the different business models being deployed in India, with their successes and challenges.

Video: Data Miniseries

Our data miniseries looks at the importance of good data, how to unlock it, and how it can be used to effectively make major decisions and benefit big causes.

Turning Data Into Insight

According to the UN, the “deployment of decentralized renewable energy is fueling a disruptive transformation of the energy sector”, by providing a fast, cost-effective and sustainable approach to universal energy access. Yet we at Power for All, our partners and stakeholders agree that many actors with the influence to accelerate decentralized renewable energy (DRE) growth.

Power for All Helps Accelerate Rates of Electrification to End Energy Poverty in South West Nigeria

Power for All, a global advocacy campaign for distributed renewable energy (DRE) is helping policymakers, faith-based institutions, civil society organizations and trade associations in the South West region to use renewable energy solutions to accelerate the rate of electrification and end energy poverty in the region.

Nigeria Energy Access Taskforce Sets New Targets

Nigeria’s Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) Taskforce, which was launched in February to accelerate modern electricity access initiatives, met July 17, 2018, to review its success since its last meeting and set new milestones to be reached in order to grow the sector.

Nigerian States Commit to Increasing Electrification Using Decentralized Renewables

The North-West region is Nigeria’s second largest geopolitical zone, made up of 7 states which cover 216,065km2 and an estimated population of 45 million people, but yet its least electrified region with only 14.6 million people having access to electricity with the bulk of the un-electrified in rural communities.

The New Activists

A 100% renewable energy future is increasingly possible, in part thanks to a new generation of activists. Evolving campaign models, which are decentralized and can spread to more people more quickly through digital tools, are proving a winning formula for evidence-based, solutions-oriented grassroots activism. May Boeve of 350.org explains.

The Kenya Clean Energy Cycling Caravan

The Tour de France might still be one week away, but in Kenya young people are currently cycling across the country to connect with people who do not have access to energy. During the trip the cyclists are meeting with local communities and government officials to promote renewable energy as a clean solution to lack of energy access, ahead of the Kenyan elections that are taking place on the 8 August. This is part of the Big Shift campaign supported by the African Coalition for Sustainable Energy and Access (ACSEA), the Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA), Kenya Youth Climate Network and Christian Aid.

The New Activists

Different campaigns across geographies are uniting to support a renewable energy future, says May Boeve of 350.org

Spotlight: Distributed Models for Grid Extension Could Save African Utilities Billions of Dollars

Sub-Saharan Africa utilities run huge deficits. Distributed renewable energy can help them extend service in a more cost-efficient way, say Rebekah Shirley of Power for All and GTM Research’s Ben Attia.

Research Summary: Electricity Access and Development in Sub-Saharan Africa

The Africa’s Pulse biannual report by The World Bank focuses on electricity access in Sub-Saharan Africa. It looks at recent innovations in access delivery and governance, and how different approaches impact economic development.

In Conversation with... Lisa Jordan

Shine is a newly launched global campaign dedicated to ending energy poverty. Shine’s director Lisa Jordan is working to mobilize foundations, communities of faith and investors that have previously not focused on the more than over 1.1 billion people who lack access to energy.

Fact Sheet: Mini-Grids In India: Mini-Grid Market Highlights and Policy

As one the world’s leading mini-grid markets, India can scale the role of private rural utilities to help meet domestic and international energy access challenges. In the first of two fact sheets, we look at the current state of the Indian mini-grid sector and the challenges it faces.

Campaign Update: June 2018

During two regional DRE 101 workshop in Kogi and Enugu with high-level state and regional policymakers, the Power for All team received a deluge of requests from other states for similar training. Power for All has been conducting the trainings as part of the Scaling Off-Grid Energy (SOGE) project, but was only funded to do a series of six regions.

Nigeria’s Abia State Leads on Scaling Off-grid Energy

One of the major objectives of the Scaling Off-Grid Energy project (SOGE), funded by USAID and Power Africa and co-implemented in Nigeria by Power for All and FHI360, is to increase awareness and knowledge among sub-national policymakers of how decentralized renewable energy (DRE) solutions can accelerate energy access. The main platform for meeting this goal is a 6-part series of regional workshops, called DRE101, with the first two already held in Kogi State, North-Central Nigeria, and Enugu State, South-Eastern Nigeria.

Policymakers in Nigeria’s South South Region Benefit From Workshop on Decentralized Renewable Energy

CALABAR, June 18th, 2018—Power for All, a global advocacy campaign for distributed renewable energy (DRE), conducted two workshops for policymakers, faith-based institutions, civil society organizations and trade associations in the South-South region of Nigeria on how to use DRE solutions to accelerate the rate of electrification and end energy poverty in the region.

Nigeria: The Next Big Frontier For Rural Electricity Access

East Africa has long been a focus of rural electrification in Africa, but all eyes are now turning to Nigeria in the west, as the national leadership, international funders and the private sector unleash a range of federal and state activities to increase deployment of decentralized renewable energy solutions. The stakes are high.

Research Summary: Poor People's Energy Outlook

Practical Action’s PPEO 2017 focuses on how to finance people-driven energy access solutions. Through case studies from Bangladesh, Kenya and Togo, Practical Action highlights that we already have most of the tools needed to finance a bottom-up renewable revolution.

Research Summary: Nigeria Finance

Recent research by Power for All’s on-the-ground country campaign finds that the Nigerian decentralized renewable energy (DRE) market is large and proven, but the capital required to finance this market remains to be unlocked.

Video: Nigeria Mini-Series

Electrifying all Nigerians has become a priority in this populous West African country, where approximately 75 million still remain in darkness even as the economy surges ahead in other ways. Now, the power sector is focused on getting safe, reliable energy to the entire population.

In Conversation with... Habiba Ali

Habiba Ali, the dynamic founder and CEO of Nigeria’s SOSAI Renewable Energies, and vice president of the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria (REAN), talked to Power for All about scaling mini-grids, what’s still needed to ensure rural electrification targets, and the importance of getting more women leaders into the DRE sector.

Nigeria: The Next Big Frontier for Rural Electricity Access

Igu, a farming village in Nigeria of about 4000 people, has never had electricity, despite being located in Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, just an hour’s drive from the seat of Nigeria's Federal Government, Abuja. For villages like Igu, getting access to energy has until now remained a far-fetched dream.

Campaign Update: May 2018

Power for All had a significant presence at the SEforALL Forum. CEO Kristina Skierka joined a high-level panel on “Electricity for All in Sub-Saharan Africa”, and research director Rebekah Shirley guided an interactive working session called the “Energy Access Dividend- Data that Informs and Influences”, looking at how to further research on socio-economic impacts of electricity access, with participation from Acumen, Duke University, RVE.SOL, wPower Hub and the World Health Organization.

25x25 Overview

This collaboration between Power for All, SNV, Hivos and Practical Action aims to work with 25 countries to stimulate last-mile electrification markets and end energy poverty by 2025, hence "25x25". Many national governments have the political will to address rural electrification, but often lack the resources and capacity.

In Conversation with Ilana Cohen, GSMA

The GSMA has been a leader in linking mobile networks and services with energy access, most notably through the introduction of pay-as-you-go (PAYG) solar. Power for All spoke with Ilana Cohen about major emerging trends related to the intersection of connectivity and rural electrification: 1. The significance of smartphones emerging as the next big consumer “appliance” with PAYG solar consumers. 2. The market entrance of international Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) into the energy access sector. 3. What the convergence of these two trends holds in store for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

A Case For More "Screen Time"

The concept of a ‘digital divide’ is about 20 years old. Yet nearly 60% of the world's population is still not connected to the internet. The rise of distributed renewables is changing the connectivity equation - for consumers, telecom companies, schools and health clinics.

Nigeria Energy Access Taskforce Confronts Tariff Challenge

Nigeria’s Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) Taskforce, which was launched in February to accelerate modern electricity access initiatives, met April 18 to tackle pressing challenges for the DRE sector, including a new tariff on solar panel imports.

Research Summary: Powering Last Mile Connectivity

Nearly four billion people are not connected to the internet today, representing a significant opportunity for both socio-economic development and business. Bridging this digital divide requires affordable and reliable access to electricity.

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewables: Education

Decentralized renewable energy (DRE) solutions are helping millions of school children reach their potential. With many students still studying without light or electricity at school and at home, DRE solutions are critical to improving literacy and keeping children in the education system.

Campaign Update: April 2018

Power for All worked closely with our partner, the Africa Mini-grid Developers Association (AMDA), to help launch the world’s first trade group focused exclusively on the full-range of mini-grid solutions.

In Conversation with... Praveen Kumar

How to educate last mile consumers in India about new technologies? Visit 9,000 villages and engage over 200,000 people.

When Power is Life or Death

The founder of Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Michael Liebreich, recently launched the Project Bo crowdsourcing campaign, triggered when he saw a tweet last year from Dr Niall Conroy of University College Dublin.

Hey Matt Damon, Let’s Talk

Chances are that if you live in a remote part of sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia and don’t have access to electricity, you also don’t have access to clean water. That’s hundreds of millions of people.

New Markets for Distributed Renewables Opened Up in Nigerian States

For countries with a federal government, policy implementation and change frequently happen at the state level. Nigeria, with 36 states, is no exception. As part of the Scaling Off Grid Energy (SOGE) project, Power for All has kicked off a 6-part workshop series in low energy access states to ensure that decentralized renewable energy (DRE) solutions are fully baked in to local electrification plans.

Sierra Leone Energy Revolution Picks Up Pace

Innovative financing proposals and local media support for energy access were the outcomes of two workshops held in Sierra Leone to propel the Energy Revolution. At the events, Power for All brought together stakeholders to drive engagement and collaboration in support of the country’s efforts to help families and businesses gain energy access.

2018: Utilities and the Decentralized Pivot

“The Future of Energy”—also known as “The Energy Transition”—has been contemplated, discussed, and written about ad nauseam by nearly every scholar and consulting firm working in or around the power sector today.

Insider Insight: Rafiki Power

The International Energy Agency has advised that 45 percent of rural electrification—bringing power to over 480 million people—is best achieved via mini-grids. In a recent Power for All survey, we asked mini-grid providers for their insights on the most important steps policy-makers can take to unlock this potential. In the technology category, standards, clear regulation and fast, low-cost licensing and permitting were all pinpointed as key policy actions

Decentralized Renewables Combatting Climate Change

By 2030, replacing kerosene lamps and diesel generators with off-grid distributed renewables could save nearly a gigaton of CO2e each year—equal to the annual emissions of Germany, the world's 4th largest economy. Share this graphic and join our call for a cleaner, healthier future!

Key to Closing the Energy Access Gap

To meet Sustainable Development Goal 7—clean, affordable, modern energy for all—by 2030 we need a 'revolution' in progress towards the universal energy access target. This infographic, based on data and analysis by the Overseas Development Institute, is a stark illustration of how far we are off track. But decentralized solutions—such as mini-grids and solar home systems—are key to closing the energy access progress gap, and will ensure that 1+ billion people are not left behind.

100 Partners to Share

Reaching Power for All will take the Action of Many. And without those who form our campaign—practitioners, advocates, villagers, officials, funders—we can't succeed. To celebrate everyone who is working to achieve energy access, and to mark reaching our 100 partner milestone, we have created a shareable image. We hope you will use it, and join us in demanding that energy access does not have to wait!

Distributed solar is a jobs creation engine

The decentralized renewable industry in emerging markets like Africa and South Asia still lacks comprehensive and up-to-date numbers on total number of jobs created, but IRENA just put out a new report that hints at the huge untapped potential for employment.

India: Global Leader in Electricity Access

Energy access in India is a $48 billion dollar a year opportunity. The country has the most unelectrified people of any country in the world. It is also the biggest single market for distributed renewable energy (DRE) solutions. Below is an infographic that spotlights the momentum and huge untapped potential for DRE in India.

Decentralized Renewables: No Target, No Universal Electricity Access

Over the past year, Power for All and its campaign partners have worked to build a case for two things: 1. that achieving universal energy access before 2030 and 2. that governments must lead on creating a policy and regulatory framework for accelerated DRE deployment

Utilize Energy Access Opportunity Cost Assesments

This infographic can be used to help initiate calls-to-action to catalyze an energy access superfund

Video: Solar a Game-Changer for Village Healthcare in India

Tribal and forest communities in remote parts of the country are turning to renewable energy as a catalyst for delivering better healthcare. Two new videos from SELCO Foundation show the huge impact of distributed solar.

When Power is Life or Death

Access to electricity saves lives. Lack of it can take them. Yet universal healthcare's reliance on energy is still not given enough attention in the fight for sustainable development. Energy underpins modern healthcare, whether through connectivity to telemedicine, safe delivery of babies, or refrigeration of vaccines. The stakes couldn't be higher, and international focus on strengthening health systems must put energy front and center.

Campaign Update: March 2018

Power For All has kicked-off its next phase of work in support of Ethiopia's ground-breaking National Electrification Plan (NEP), which includes integrated energy planning, result-based approaches and incorporating technologies and business models that will help achieve the NEP’s decentralized renewable energy (DRE) access targets of 7.7 million households (35 percent of total households).

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewables: Keeping Families and Communities Healthy

One billion people are served by health clinics lacking electricity, while homes without power turn to dangerous candles or toxic kerosene lamps for lighting. Adopting clean energy technologies reduces the risk of fires and accidents, reduces indoor air pollution and powers life-saving equipment. Health-related development targets will not be met without decentralized renewables.

Research Summary: Positive Household Benefits of DRE

A new analysis by Acumen, exploring the impact of its distributed renewable energy (DRE) investments in 11 countries, finds that the majority of households served by DRE products are near or below the poverty line, and that such products, on average, show positive impact in all well-being metrics measured. The report finds that decentralized renewables represent an opportunity to leapfrog into clean, reliable, need-based energy services.

Spotlight: Women Poised to Lead Nigeria’s Clean Energy Revolution

Recognition of energy access impact on women is growing, and nowhere is this shift more evident than in Sub-Saharan African countries. Women are emerging not just as consumers of a new wave of innovative energy access products and services, but also as leading entrepreneurs and leaders shaping the industry.

Video: Energy and Health Miniseries

Innovative solutions are emerging to address the interdependence between energy and health. See some of the impactful work happening around the world, bringing electricity to the most remote healthcare facilities.

Kerosene-replacement Workshops Find Broad Support in Nigeria Regions

ABUJA, Nigeria, March 23, 2018—Power for All, a global advocacy campaign for distributed renewable energy (DRE), has concluded two workshops in the North-Central and South-East regions of Nigeria on phasing out inefficient lighting such as kerosene lamps, and enabling a transition to the use of clean, distributed lighting solutions.

Solar Jobs in India Changing Lives

Off-grid solar leader Greenlight Planet directly manages 2,000 sales agents in India, with its distributors employing another 10,000. Here is the story of one woman and the impact of solar on her life.

Newly Electrified Villages in India Lag in Quality, Reliability

New research looks at hundreds of villages in India’s most energy-poor states, and finds that recent connections to the grid for remote villages are worse than past rural electrification efforts

How a Solar Company Is Creating Impact by Involving Women in Rural India

To mark International Women’s Day, Simpa Networks launches a new effort to reach more than 36,000 female customers per year, and train more than 5,000 women-village level entrepreneurs to deliver solar electricity

Campaign Update: February 2018

A partnership between Power Africa, the US Global Development Lab, USAID Nigeria, FHI360 and Power for All launched a decentralized renewable energy (DRE) taskforce in Nigeria to accelerate modern electricity access initiatives. DRE solutions are an important tool for Nigeria to better exploit the full range of its renewable energy resources, especially with delivering energy to remote communities. The partnership was formed under the Scaling Off Grid Energy (SOGE) Grand Challenge for Development, which aims to accelerate growth of DRE solutions and provide 20 million households in sub-Saharan Africa with access to modern, clean and affordable electricity.

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewables: Supporting Sanitation and Access to Clean Water

Clean, distributed energy is proving a powerful tool for delivering water for drinking and agriculture, and can also help bring sanitation to the billions living without a toilet. As we approach World Water Day on March 22, take a look at why energy and water access are intimately linked.

In conversation with Damilola Ogunbiyi, Nigeria Rural Electrification Agency – Power for All

Damilola Ogunbiyi, the managing director of the Nigerian Rural Electrification Agency (REA), is responsible for implementing the Nigerian Off Grid Electrification Program and the Nigerian Electrification Project, a $350 million World Bank facility to rapidly increase the deployment of solar mini grids and solar home systems to bring electricity to the country's 80 million people still living without access to power. She is also responsible for the Energizing Education Program, an effort by the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) to provide uninterrupted electricity to students at 37 federal universities and seven university teaching hospitals through off-grid captive power plants.

Research Summary: Electricity Subsidies Failing Low-Income Households

Subsidies are a common way to support electricity access to poor households. Yet data from the World Bank shows that subsidies are largely failing to help the under-served. In fact, only 10% of electricity subsidies in Sub-Saharan Africa flow to households with the lowest income, while subsidizing residential tariffs accounts for the single largest source of utility deficits.

Video: Water-energy Access Series

The ability for distributed solar to deliver clean drinking water and rural sanitation to remote communities is gaining traction, as this video series clearly illustrates.

Hey Matt Damon, Let's Talk

Water.org co-founder Matt Damon, you've said solutions "must extend to other places quickly" to solve the global water crisis. We agree, and clean distributed solar is a great answer. With 2018 spotlighting the dual global goals of universal electricity access (SDG7), and universal access to clean water and sanitation (SDG6), now is the time for a water-energy partnership.

Research Summary: Making Sub-Saharan African Utilities Financially Viable

A 2017 World Bank report, Making Power Affordable for Africa and Viable for Its Utilities, analyzes the financial viability of utilities in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) using utility revenue and operations cost records. The report finds many SSA utilities face huge deficits, and will require a combination of increasing operational efficiency, raising tariffs, and optimizing their generation mix to achieve financial viability.

Kickoff of DRE Task Force

ABUJA, February 15, 2018—A Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) Taskforce to accelerate modern energy access initiatives was launched today by a coalition of partners.

Rural Electricity Consumers in India Prefer Locally-Owned Grids

Arianna Tozzi recently visited Karnataka state to gauge consumer attitudes toward centralized grid extension vs. locally-owned and managed mini-grids. The favored option: mini-grids.

India Failing to Support Distributed Renewables for Energy Access

IISD’s Global Subsidies Initiative (GSI) finds in a new analysis that government support for clean, decentralized energy access solutions is woefully lacking — less then 1% — compared to fossil fuel, centralized options

Utilities and the Decentralized Pivot

We haven't won yet. But decentralized renewables are starting to win a meaningful role in the quest for universal electricity access. Building on Power for All's earlier efforts to help development banks and national policymakers understand the opportunity, 2018 will be a time to ensure that utilities are fully embracing the distributed revolution.

Campaign Update: 2018 Plans

2018 is a pivotal year, with a high-level global spotlight on SDG7 and universal energy access. Power for All will be redoubling its efforts to advocate on behalf of the DRE sector and catalyze markets, while also going deeper on a few key themes: integrated energy (with a focus on the future role of utilities, including mini-grids), the SDG7 nexus with other development goals, skills and jobs, and knowledge sharing.

Fact Sheet: Improve Safety for Vulnerable Communities

From the aftermath of hurricanes in Haiti and Puerto Rico, to flooding in India and the communities fleeing conflict in Syria and Myanmar, decentralized renewables are increasingly proving themselves as a powerful way to help vulnerable communities, including the 60 million refugees worldwide, gain access to electricity and related services.

In conversation with Andrew Herscowitz, Power Africa – Power for All

During the recent Global Off-Grid Solar Forum, we sat down with Andrew Herscowitz, Coordinator of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Power Africa, to discuss the future of the initiative’s pioneering market-based effort to scale energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa. Power Africa turns 5 years old in June.

Research Summary: Sad State of Support for Distributed Energy in India

Power for All partner IISD produces exceptional analysis focused on energy subsidies worldwide through its Global Subsidies Initiative. New data reveals that India’s government is giving short shrift to decentralized renewables when handing out energy subsidies. In fact, less than 1% of all subsidies go to distributed renewables, IISD discovered in a new report, India's Energy Transition: Mapping energy subsidies to fossil fuels and clean energy in India.

Spotlight: massive "under-the-grid" opportunity for distributed energy – Power for All

In our ongoing series with GTM Research on energy access, GTMR's Ben Attia and our PEAK research team uncover the untapped opportunity for decentralized solutions to serve "under-the-grid" communities, which total 110 million people, or one in every six African people without electricity access.

Top trends for energy access in 2018

Power for All’s Willie Brent attended the recent GOGLA Global Off-Grid Solar Forum, to hear the latest on the distributed solar revolution. Besides a new report that said the sector has already impacted 360 million lives and would reach $8 billion in revenue by 2022, here are some other takeaways.

Can Saubhagya succeed? Prospects of universal electrification in Uttar Pradesh

Johannes Urpelainen, director of the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy (ISEP), reports from the front lines on India’s ambitious energy access plan and the challenges to implementation on the ground

Husk Power nets $20 million from Shell, ENGIE, Swedfund to scale mini-grids

The deal is the largest equity investment realized to date by a mini-grid company. India-based Husk will use the funds to expand its business in India and Tanzania to 300 mini-grids, serving over 100,000 customers, according to company CEO Manoj Sinha.

Why active community ownership is key to rural electricity access in India

Arianna Tozzi, an India-based researcher, explains how community involvement can provide a sense of empowerment and lead to long-term sustainability of solar mini-grids

Off-grid solar financing failing in India

Mohit Anand of TFE Consulting discusses the challenges of accessing capital for decentralized renewable energy in India, and suggests securitization as a path forward

Distributed solar industry eyes India as next “pay-as-you-go” giant

Many hurdles remain, including low consumer awareness, lack of mobile money and a fragmented telecom industry, but Anna Wells, senior communications adviser at GOGLA, reports that momentum is growing heading into 2018

Amid push for rural grid extension, distribution franchising could deliver reliable energy access in India

The government is banking on state-owned utilities and a centralized grid, but global trends point to a decentralized model in partnership with private sector, community

Growing demand for mini-grids, solar in rural India; kerosene declining

Shalu Agrawal, a researcher at the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy (ISEP), reports from the front lines of Uttar Pradesh that decentralized renewable energy solutions are gaining popularity in rural communities

What’s the best battery for rural mini-grids?

New testing by the Institute for Transformative Technologies (ITT) finds Lithium-Ion (Li-ion), Aqueous Hybrid Ion (AHI) and Advanced Lead Acid (ALA) batteries all have strengths, but cost will be king

Mini-grids can quickly achieve universal access in India, cut emissions: report

New research from REEEP shines light on need for greater public support for private sector mini-grid developers, with 36.5 million people in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh states hanging in the balance

Stage Set for Women to Lead a Solar-Powered Gender Revolution in Rural India

A growing movement of companies and civil society groups is helping women in rural India become solar entrepreneurs and improve their livelihoods. Now the key is scale.

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewables: Boosting Agriculture and Improving Nutrition

DRE solutions can aid subsistence and low-income farmers to increase outputs, create savings, and allow for increased income for spending on more nutritious food. 

Subsidy and Electricity Access

The private sector has proven that it can deliver electricity access with little or no government support. But for the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7 to be met, there is an increasing consensus that subsidy reform is required that gives decentralized renewable energy (DRE) solutions a level playing field with traditional (and mostly loss-making) business models.

Top India companies mostly ignore energy access in CSR spend: report

India requires companies to spend 2% of profit on CSR. New research shows just a tiny fraction of that spend going to clean energy, with money often failing to reach the most energy-poor regions

Video: Rural small business benefiting from reliable, quality mini-grids

This mini-grid in Uttar Pradesh isn’t serving a single home. Instead, it is providing power to over 80 small businesses and local entrepreneurs are seeing the pay-off

Saubhagya: the challenge in one chart

India has set a target of electrifying all households by Q1 2019. That will require 10x growth in the pace of new connections, says Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF)

India’s Renewable Energy Push: A Win-Win for Job Creation and Electricity Access

A new report from World Resources Institute (WRI) explores India’s opportunity to be a role model for job creation in developing countries, especially for women, and create lucrative alternatives to subsistence farming through energy access

Commentary: New India Electrification Target Daunting, but Doable

Debajit Palit of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), a research institute, says a newly announced government scheme is a step in the right direction to electrify all households in India, but only with change management at state-owned distributors

Video: Mini-Grids Help Train Women, Youth with Reliable Power

Smart Power India is pushing the envelope in productive uses of electricity access beyond lighting, such as this Husk Power Systems mini-grid project in Kathkuiyan, Uttar Pradesh. Access to quality, reliable power supply from the mini-grid is ensuring that job training is uninterrupted, giving economic opportunity to local women and youth.

Tangible Benefits of Accelerating Electricity Access in Developing Countries Where 1 Billion Still Lack Power

New report urges greater use of decentralized renewable energy as quicker, less costly option, and reveals evidence of significant black carbon emission reductions

Why Wait? Seizing the Energy Access Dividend

This research paper explores the concept of an energy access dividend that assigns economic, social and environmental value to the time it takes for households, businesses and communities to obtain the benefits associated with electricity access.

Crowdfunding tapped as new finance path for rural electrification in India

With access to affordable, long-term finance still a challenge in India for last-mile energy infrastructure, creative solutions are seeing the light of day, including crowdfunding

Major India Player Azure Enters Mini-grid Market for Last-mile Electrification

The NYSE-traded company, which has a portfolio of over 1.6 GW in 22 states, unveils M-Power, its new business focused on bringing power to rural households across India, and is the latest major energy company to enter the mini-grid sector

Commentary: Can Modi create global mini-grid market for India like China did with solar PV?

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), mini-grids are a $190 billion market opportunity between now and 2030

New Energy Access Frontiers Emerging in Oft-Ignored Countries

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is ranked 184 out of 190 on the World Bank’s ease of doing business index and 175 on ease of getting electricity. By comparison, Kenya, a favorite of the donor community when it comes to energy access, ranks 92 and 106 respectively. The World Bank recently credited Kenya $150 million to provide solar to under-served communities.

Solar + Storage: A path to converging clean cooking, electricity access? India thinks so.

The government has launched an innovation challenge that hopes to revolutionize access to electric induction cookstoves by taking advantage of huge cost declines in solar PV. Cheaper batteries are the “x factor”. Health and climate benefits are the prize.

Podcast: the emerging South-South nexus in last-mile electrification #SDG7

Girish Shivakumar, the host of Emerging Tech Radio and policy analyst for Customized Energy Solutions, the company powering the Microgrid Initiative for Campus and Rural Opportunities (MICRO) in India, talks with Power for All’s William Brent.

India energy future needs to be less ad hoc, more distributed

Arunabha Ghosh, the CEO of leading research institute Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), lays out a vision for how to build an inclusive, resilient, sustainable energy future in India that leaves no one behind

New $50 million energy access growth fund announced by Shell Fdn, FMO

Shell Foundation and Dutch development bank FMO have announced a new growth fund for energy access businesses in India and Africa, with the aim of deploying $50 million and being operational in Q1 2018.

Data access is critical to achieving electricity access

One of the biggest gaps identified by the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector is access to quality data and research. The African Development Bank (AfDB) for instance recently said lack of reliable data is one of the single most critical challenges for private mini-grid investors. Power for All’s Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK) was created 18 months ago to help bridge that gap – both to provide data needed by the sector, and to help make most effective use of the information which already exists. PEAK addresses the gap in information availability and use by supporting the visibility, discoverability and usability of critical knowledge for the sector through research, our interactive knowledge sharing platform communications and advocacy.

Campaign Updates: October 2017

Together with SEforALL, Power for All will launch a new report, "Why Wait? Seizing the Energy Access Dividend" at the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn on November. 16. The Energy Access Dividend concept was originally put forward by Power for All in 2016, based on the need to account for the missed opportunities of individuals and nations of not having energy access.

Fact Sheet: SDG7 and Poverty Reduction

The body of evidence is growing to show that decentralized renewables play an important role in putting more money into the pockets of poor households and farmers, both by allowing them to switch from fossil fuels and also by creating new business opportunities. One estimate is that $40 billion in savings would result annually from replacing kerosene and candles with solar.

Video: Data and the SDGs

Despite the continued challenges in accessing data, a number of initiatives are making progress in quantifying progress on the SDGs, as well as contributing to better policy-making, such as the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data (@Data4SDGs), UN Global Pulse (@UNGlobalPulse) and UN Foundation-based Data2x (@Data2x). For an Africa perspective on the importance of data, watch this overview.

How India can lead the world in super-efficient appliances

India made efficient LED lightbulbs ubiquitous and cheap in just three years. It has an opportunity to do the same for super-efficient appliances and create a massive new global and domestic market, says innovator Sundar Muruganandhan.

Scaling SDG7 with Data

Without better evidence and data, the DRE sector will be unable to scale at speed. Power for All created its Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK) to help fill the void. In this newsletter, our PEAK director Dr. Rebekah Shirley outlines key research initiatives, including a new framework for Utility 2.0, the role of human capacity data in advancing SDG7, the release with SEforALL of a new report, "Why Wait? Seizing the Energy Access Dividend" and much more.

This Remote Region In Rajasthan Could Be India’s Answer To Tackling Energy Poverty

A group of organizations, including SELCO Foundation, Rang De and Kotra Adivasi Sansthan, are teaming up to provide low-cost financing for distributed solar in tribal communities

India’s Twitterati for electricity access

Power for All has compiled an informal guide of leading voices on Twitter connected to the effort to bring electricity to the 300 million in India without access. The below list is based on frequency and relevancy of posts and number of followers. We’ve included individuals and institutions, both from within and outside India. If you think we missed someone, or have story ideas for the Powering Rural India publication, please comment below. #SDGs #GlobalGoals #SDG7 #India #energyaccess

IEA Concludes DRE “Least-Cost Solution” for 75% of SDG7 Connections Needed

An updated analysis of electricity access by the International Energy Agency (IEA) concludes that “decentralised systems, led by solar PV in off-grid and mini-grid systems, will be the least-cost solution for three-quarters of the additional connections needed” to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) by 2030.

India historic success for electricity access, future connections will be decentralized: IEA

India stands out as “one of the largest electrification success stories in history”, accounting for 2 or every 5 people newly electrified since 2000, according to a new report by the International Energy Agency.

Indian States Energy Access Digest

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) presents updates on key state-level initiatives to improve energy access in India

A glaring omission in India’s energy policy: gender justice

It is high time the government take affirmative steps toward equity for women in the country’s energy future, argue Dr. Mini Govindan and Debajit Palit of TERI

Billions in savings from kerosene subsidy cuts should go to distributed solar: IISD

India is one of the largest consumers of kerosene on an absolute and per capita basis. Because there are no accessible, affordable and established sustainable alternatives, poor rural households — especially in remote rural areas — continue to use kerosene as their primary lighting fuel despite the well-recorded health hazards. But this is changing, according to new policy analysis by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD).

Power For All Partner Oolu​ Completes​ ​Series​ ​A​ ​Fundraising​ ​to​ ​Expand​ ​its​ ​Work​ ​in​ ​West​ ​Africa

Oolu, a Senegal-based Y Combinator start-up and one of the fastest-growing solar companies in Africa, announced the successful completion of a US$3.2 million round of equity investment. This Series A funding follows its seed round in 2015, and will support Oolu’s continued growth as it seeks to address the energy needs of the more than 150 million people who live without access to electricity in West Africa.

Video: Mini-grids increase rice processing output for rural Indian women by 100x

The Smart Power India (SPI) initiative has electrified 8 villages in Jharkhand state with green mini-grids. Women who earn a living from processing rice are now using electric hullers and fans to hull and winnow rice, and the impact has been huge: the amount of rice hulled daily has increased 100x from 20kg to 2,000kg.

Billionaire puts electricity access on front page of top India newspapers

Manoj Bhargava, the Indian-American billionaire, philanthropist and creator of 5-hour Energy, took out front-page ads in all of India’s top national newspapers on Oct. 6, offering “Free Electricity” from distributed renewable energy. Through the Billions in Change initiative, the native of Uttar Pradesh is advertising portable solar lighting as well as phone charging solutions. It also offers a pedal-powered hybrid bicycle, which drives a flywheel system that turns a generator, which charges a battery pack.

India energy access sector makes headway, also faces headwinds: CLEAN report

A new report launched by industry representative Clean Energy Access Network (CLEAN) showed that India’s private sector energy access companies are experiencing growth, and expect to triple their financing needs in the next three years, but need stronger public partnerships to scale more rapidly.

Scaling up mini-grids through capital infusion, innovation, and cross-sector collaboration

Government affirmation of off-grid models being a complementary way of viable electricity provision will be critical to unlocking market potential. A quarter of the world’s energy poor live in India. This energy access gap is partially due to the remoteness of some communities, where the national grid may not reach for many years. In some cases, these villages do have central grid infrastructure, but sufficient electricity is not reaching people at the household level. This puts the unelectrified at a distinct disadvantage because energy is a prerequisite for economic development.

Small hydro target moved up in India

NITI Aayog, the government policy think tank in India, has recommended that the country’s Small Hydro Power (SHP) target of 5 GW by 2022 be advanced to 2019–20, which it says will aid in balancing variable solar energy in decentralized locations.

Are mini-grids about to get really boring (and boom)?

Mini-grids have had their fair share of hype in recent years, so a measure of skepticism is warranted, especially when you consider the multiple challenges that have prevented them from scaling: access to affordable capital, uncertain policies, unpredictable consumption patterns, complex community dynamics, currency risk, high transaction costs for investors, etc. In the words of Frank Bergh, vice president at Sigora International: “A start-up utility is still a jumbo shrimp.”

Policy spotlight: Nigeria & India lead on mini-grids

India has roughly 300 million people without access to electricity, and Nigeria about 100 million. Together, the countries account for some 40% of the world’s total unelectrified population, and that percentage is even higher if you just include rural inhabitants. But the countries are proactively working to address the problem, and both have put forward federal mini-grid policies that offer huge potential for scale. The policies define what a mini-grid is, simplify permitting and perhaps most importantly resolve what happens if/when the grid arrives to an area where a mini-grid has been established. The policies are a critical market signal, offering policy certainty that is still needed across much of Sub-Saharan Africa and the rest of South Asia. Our sector stakeholders -- governments, developers, civil society groups, financiers -- have much to learn and emulate. For policy-makers with vision, mini-grids can help achieve the SDGs in a more reliable, clean and affordable manner.

Campaign Update: September 2017

Find out about recent activities and the upcoming events where Power for All will be profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Finance Focus: Mini-grids Meet their match.com

“New investors are interested in mini-grids, but they look at companies and say ‘They are not ready for us’,” says Katrina Pielli, senior energy advisor for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). “It’s exhausting for investors to go through 16-tab spreadsheets with no two developers presenting things the same way.”

In Conversation with... Sam Slaughter

Sam Slaughter, a founding member of the newly formed Africa Mini-grid Developers Association (AMDA), tells Power for All that it’s time for the mini-grid sector to move past ideation and start executing at scale.

Research Summary: Powering Productive Use

For many governments and multilateral institutions, electricity access needs to bring socio-economic development opportunities with it to get the attention and support the sector wants. It is imperative for mini-grids to be able to demonstrate “productive use”.

Video: Mini Film Series on Mini-grids & Productive Use

The narrative for the contribution of distributed renewables to Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) has centered around lighting and phone charging for the past 10 years.

Are Mini-Grids About to Get Really Boring (and Boom)?

No sexy headlines here. Mini-grids have had enough hype over the years. Now it's time for the boring work of standardization and scale. Much more needs to be done, but there are imporant advances being made in building a vibrant sector that is on a trajectory toward full commercialization. What are the 5 standardizations needed?

5 Concrete Steps for India to Achieve Universal Electricity Access

India’s government has set 2022 as the target for providing 24x7 electricity to all of its people, including the roughly 300 million who lack any access to power. A lot of progress has been made, but a program associate at leading Indian policy research institute CEEW has outlined 5 concrete steps that should be taken to assure the ambitious goal is met.

India pledges $2.5 billion to electrify all households by Q1 2019: Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a new phase of India’s universal electrification program, saying that state’s would be required to electrify all households by March 31, 2019 and committing 163.2 billion rupees ($2.5 billion) for the program, with 86% of that going to rural electrification.

Power for all, always

Smart technology, involving people in operations could make 24x7 electricity a reality

Mobile for Energy Access: A Conversation with Mats Granryd and Strive Masiyiwa

1.2 billion people around the world are living still living without access energy, yet two-thirds of them are within mobile network coverage. As the rapid growth of the mobile industry is outpacing the slow extension of the energy grid in many developing countries, mobile is providing new pathways to delivery key services such as energy.

How Women Are Bringing Solar Power to Villages in Bihar

Recently, Kumar Deepak, environment officer at the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in India, had an opportunity to meet with Amrish Joshi, a block coordinator for Tankuppa, Gaya, in Bihar state for the Bihar Rural Livelihoods Project (aka, Jeevika), who has been working on renewable energy installations in the area. The area was previously infamous as a corridor for a Naxal insurgency. Solar mini-grids have been set up and are now operational in two villages.

Solar mini-grids deliver clean water to rural India

Distributed solar is about more than just bringing electricity to rural villages. It’s about delivering the services that electricity enable, including clean water. Grassroots and Rural Innovative Development (GRID) and a growing number of private companies are pioneering a new approach in India using renewable energy mini-grids to power reverse osmosis (RO) water purification plants.

Thoughts on quality electricity access in rural Jharkhand

Jharkhand is one of the most diverse states in India with 32 recognized indigenous tribes accounting for more than 26% of the state’s population. The village of Kantasola is inhabited by one such tribe, the Santhals, known for their art, handicrafts, bow and arrow skills and, spot-clean villages and houses.

Backed by Japanese giant, top India mini-grid developer heads to Africa

Mitsui & Co., Ltd. and OMC Power are forming a joint venture (JV) to enter the African market as part of a just announced ¥1 billion ($9.3 million) equity investment by the Japanese conglomerate in the leading private Indian mini-grid developer, according to the companies.

Mini-grids deliver in India floods

In late August, Bihar, one of the poorest states in India, was devastated by flooding that affected millions of people and severely challenged authorities working to support the rural communities hit hardest. With uncertainty about the availability of grid power, renewable energy mini-grids stepped up to ensure adequate back-up power and played a key role in assisting with relief operations.

New research: rooftop solar can bridge India’s gap in rural health services

The Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), one of South Asia’s leading policy research institutions, today issued a new report concluding that distributed solar energy can play a major role in bridging India’s massive gap in delivering rural healthcare services, both as a primary and backup source of power. Currently, 1 in 2 rural Primary Health Centers (PHCs) in India suffer from lack of electricity or irregular power supply, with over 38 million households depending on PHCs that have zero electricity access.

Research Summary: Powering Primary Healthcare through Solar in India: Lessons from Chhattisgarh

The Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) completed a first-of-its-kind quantitative and qualitative study on the impacts of electricity access via distributed solar on rural healthcare services.

In North-East India, Boat Clinics Go Solar for Better Healthcare Delivery

For communities perilously living in flood prone areas, access to basic resources and opportunities is a perpetual challenge. River islands especially lack basic infrastructure and services such as healthcare, education, power, drinking water and sanitation. People risk the weather and flooding rivers, and make long journeys in difficult terrains to get basic health services such as vaccination, mother and child care, medicines, minor operations, etc. Medical emergencies can be particularly harrowing. Same challenges are prevalent across the sundarbans in Bangladesh, coastal areas of Rakhine in Myanmar, the lakes of Cambodia, and many other areas.

In north-east India, boat clinics go solar for better healthcare delivery

For communities perilously living in flood prone areas, access to basic resources and opportunities is a perpetual challenge. River islands especially lack basic infrastructure and services such as healthcare, education, power, drinking water and sanitation. People risk the weather and flooding rivers, and make long journeys in difficult terrains to get basic health services such as vaccination, mother and child care, medicines, minor operations, etc. Medical emergencies can be particularly harrowing. Same challenges are prevalent across the sundarbans in Bangladesh, coastal areas of Rakhine in Myanmar, the lakes of Cambodia, and many other areas.

Small hydro target moved up in India

NITI Aayog, the government policy think tank in India, has recommended that the country’s Small Hydro Power (SHP) target of 5 GW by 2022 be advanced to 2019–20, which it says will aid in balancing variable solar energy in decentralized locations.

With a Few Tweaks, India Can Lead Rural Electrification With Real-Time Data and Smarter Metrics

India’s Draft National Energy Policy, published by NITI Aayog on June 27, proposes to change the national definition of village electrification. The change would only consider a village fully electrified if all households enjoy adequate hours of power supply on a typical day.

With a few tweaks, India can lead rural electrification with real-time data and smarter metrics

India’s Draft National Energy Policy, published by NITI Aayog on June 27, proposes to change the national definition of village electrification. The change would only consider a village fully electrified if all households enjoy adequate hours of power supply on a typical day.

“Green Fund” needed to unlock finance and achieve India's clean energy goals

Momentum is building as India moves towards meeting its clean energy targets. Recognizing the tremendous growth potential and opportunity to overhaul India’s energy sector, the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy convened policymakers, investors and key clean energy stakeholders at the World Renewable Energy Technology Congress in New Delhi this week to focus on accelerating the market and achieving India’s goals of installing 175 gigawatts (GW) of renewable power by 2022.

SEforALL launches newly updated 'heat maps': highlighting 20 "high impact" countries facing sustainable energy challenges

Power for All partner SEforAll recently launched an updated interactive addition to their website, called "heat maps". Relying on data from their knowledge partners, the maps graphically highlight countries and regions that are making the most progress, as well as those that are facing the biggest challenges, on major sustainable energy issues.

“Green Fund” needed to unlock finance and achieve India’s clean energy goals

Momentum is building as India moves towards meeting its clean energy targets. Recognizing the tremendous growth potential and opportunity to overhaul India’s energy sector, the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy convened policymakers, investors and key clean energy stakeholders at the World Renewable Energy Technology Congress in New Delhi this week to focus on accelerating the market and achieving India’s goals of installing 175 gigawatts (GW) of renewable power by 2022.

2016–17 Global LEAP Awards for Off-Grid TVs & Fans Announced

Winners and Finalists of the 2016–17 Global LEAP Awards for Outstanding Off-Grid Televisions and Fans were announced today by USAID’s Power Africa Beyond the Grid program. Power for All partner d.light won the medium television category, and our partners BBOXX and Mobisol were finalists in the large television and medium television categories, respectively. Congrats and we’re proud to have you on the Power for All campaign!

Infographic: India $48 billion annual energy access opportunity

India is the world’s largest single market for providing energy access, with 304 million people or 43 million households officially still unelectrified (depending on the data source). The government has targeted 2022 for 24x7 nationwide electrification. The problem is massive, but so is the opportunity for decentralized renewable energy (DRE).

24x7 Power is About Access, Not Electrification

India currently reports 99.4% electrification, yet there are 304 million people who still lack access to electricity according to the recent draft of the National Energy Policy (NEP) issued by the government’s policy thinktank NITI Aayog.

India: Ground Zero for Scaling Electricity Access

India has targeted universal household electrification by as early as May 2018. That's less than 300 days to bring electricity to about 300 million people (more than 1 million per day). The sheer scale of India offers an unprecedented opportunity to reshape the decentralized renewable energy (DRE)—at home and internationally. What's happening to ensure that, and what's still needed?

India: Ground Zero for Scaling Electricity Access and SDG7

For good reason, sub-Saharan Africa gets much of the attention when it comes to electricity access. It is home to more than 600 million energy poor spread across nearly 50 countries. But it is likely going to be India--by itself home to roughly 300 million unelectrified--where decentralized renewable energy (DRE) achieves the scale needed to deliver Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) - universal access to modern, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy by 2030.

Partner perspective: It's about access, not electrification

India currently reports 99.4% electrification, yet there are 304 million people who still lack access to electricity according to the recent draft of the National Energy Policy (NEP) issued by the government’s policy thinktank NITI Aayog.

Campaign Update: July-August 2017

Find out about recent activities and the upcoming events where Power for All will be profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

In Conversation with... Harihara Mohapatra

Harihara Mohapatra, COO of The CLEAN Network, spoke with Power for All about the state of the sector in India, and what’s needed to scale decentralized renewable energy.

Research Summary: Climate Finance MIA for DRE

The International Energy Agency (IEA) says $19.6 billion needs to be invested each year in distributed solutions (mini-grid and off-grid systems) to achieve universal electricity access by 2030. Yet currently just 0.2% of climate finance goes to such solutions, and low-income countries (i.e. the ones who suffer most from energy poverty and climate change) get just 5% of total clean energy finance.

Video: India Energy Access Mini Film Series

Below is a series of thematic videos from India that highlight some of the leading work being done across the sector:

India: Ground zero for scaling electricity access and SDG7

For good reason, sub-Saharan Africa gets much of the attention when it comes to electricity access. It is home to more than 600 million energy poor spread across nearly 50 countries. But it is likely going to be India — by itself home to roughly 300 million unelectrified — where decentralized renewable energy (DRE) achieves the scale needed to deliver Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) — universal access to modern, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy by 2030.

Solar Sister Joins Power for All Campaign

Solar Sister, the world’s first women-led social enterprise eradicating energy poverty at scale by investing in women as clean energy entrepreneurs and leaders, has joined the Power for All campaign.

Sector Reform + Distributed Technology = 24x7 Power

A key lesson from the past decade of electrification in India and the surge of decentralized energy technologies is that grid extension and decentralized solutions are complementary. Although distributed power may be a viable alternative to grid extension in sparsely populated countries with limited electric grid infrastructure, in India the problems with the electric grid have more to do with governance than with geography. Therefore, the best way forward is to combine power sector reform and distributed power generation under an integrated policy framework.

Sector Reform + Distributed Technology = 24x7 Power

A key lesson from the past decade of electrification in India and the surge of decentralized energy technologies is that grid extension and decentralized solutions are complementary. Although distributed power may be a viable alternative to grid extension in sparsely populated countries with limited electric grid infrastructure, in India the problems with the electric grid have more to do with governance than with geography. Therefore, the best way forward is to combine power sector reform and distributed power generation under an integrated policy framework.

ENGIE Ups Stake in India Last-Mile Market

Rassembleurs d’Energies, a sustainable energy investment and technical assistance arm of giant France-based utility ENGIE, announced its participation in a new $2.5 million round of investment in Mera Gao Power(MGP), an Indian micro-grid developer.

ENGIE ups stake in India last-mile market

Rassembleurs d’Energies, a sustainable energy investment and technical assistance arm of giant France-based utility ENGIE, announced its participation in a new $2.5 million round of investment in Mera Gao Power (MGP), an Indian micro-grid developer.

New National Energy Policy Redefines Rural “Electrification”, Sees States Taking Lead

India has put forward a sweeping roadmap for its energy future, including the role it foresees for distributed renewables as it moves to create universal electricity access by 2022, and an energy revolution by 2040, by which time India’s population will be about 1.6 billion, with electricity demand expected to increase 4.5 fold from 2012 levels.

New national energy policy redefines rural “electrification”, sees states taking lead

India has put forward a sweeping roadmap for its energy future, including the role it foresees for distributed renewables as it moves to create universal electricity access by 2022, and an energy revolution by 2040, by which time India’s population will be about 1.6 billion, with electricity demand expected to increase 4.5 fold from 2012 levels.

Waste Biomass Power Set to Surge in India

Solar energy has received most of the attention in India’s ongoing energy transition. But the country’s draft National Energy Policy (NEP) has called for putting greater resources behind projects that convert waste agricultural biomass into electricity.

Waste biomass power set to surge in India

Solar energy has received most of the attention in India’s ongoing energy transition. But the country’s draft National Energy Policy (NEP) has called for putting greater resources behind projects that convert waste agricultural biomass into electricity.

Roti and a Renewable Recipe for Better Livelihoods in Rural India

Clear linkages exist between distributed energy, energy efficiency and sustainable livelihoods. However, a holistic solution needs to go beyond the confines of technology, and integrate aspects of capacity building, appropriate financing and market intelligence. Take the case of roti.

Roti and a Renewable Recipe for Better Livelihoods in Rural India

Clear linkages exist between distributed energy, energy efficiency and sustainable livelihoods. However, a holistic solution needs to go beyond the confines of technology, and integrate aspects of capacity building, appropriate financing and market intelligence. Take the case of roti.

New Report: Progress on 24x7 Power for All

India’s government has made transparency a centerpiece of its rural electrification campaign, called Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY). A new update summarizing the status of India’s overall energy reform program (called 24x7 Power for All, or Ujwal Bharat) was recently issued, reporting that 73% of villages have been electrified under DDUGJY as of May 19, 2017.

New Report: Progress on 24x7 Power for All

India’s government has made transparency a centerpiece of its rural electrification campaign, called Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY). A new update summarizing the status of India’s overall energy reform program (called 24x7 Power for All, or Ujwal Bharat) was recently issued, reporting that 73% of villages have been electrified under DDUGJY as of May 19, 2017.

Uttar Pradesh: Opportunity to Scale Energy-as-a-Service Models for Rural Electrification

With a population of 200 million, Uttar Pradesh (UP) is India’s largest state. It is also the state with the largest number of unelectrified people. In the 2011 Census of India, only one in four rural households used electricity as their primary source of lighting, and the 2014–2015 ACCESS survey of energy poverty in rural India revealed that the typical grid-connected household only received nine hours of power supply on an average day.

Uttar Pradesh: Opportunity to Scale Energy-as-a-Service Models for Rural Electrification

With a population of 200 million, Uttar Pradesh (UP) is India’s largest state. It is also the state with the largest number of unelectrified people. In the 2011 Census of India, only one in four rural households used electricity as their primary source of lighting, and the 2014–2015 ACCESS survey of energy poverty in rural India revealed that the typical grid-connected household only received nine hours of power supply on an average day.

Virtually Battery-Free, 100% Renewable, Remotely-Managed Rural Utility Is Coming

Husk Power Systems, an early pioneer in developing micro-grids for poor, rural communities in India and sub-Saharan Africa, plans a 7-fold increase in its power plants to 600 within 5 years, expanding into a fully-fledged rural utility that delivers reliable 24/7 grid-compatible power and better customer service than incumbent utilities.

Virtually battery-free, 100% renewable, remotely-managed rural utility is coming

Husk Power Systems, an early pioneer in developing micro-grids for poor, rural communities in India and sub-Saharan Africa, plans a 7-fold increase in its power plants to 600 within 5 years, expanding into a fully-fledged rural utility that delivers reliable 24/7 grid-compatible power and better customer service than incumbent utilities.

100,000 reasons not to forget the urban-rural connection in SDG7

Most international focus on electricity poverty is understandably on remote, rural communities, where 900 million people live without power. But as Pollinate Energy just proved in India, cities also face similar challenges. Pollinate, which distributes solar and other life-changing products to vulnerable urban migrants, just announced surpassing its 100,000 customer.

100,000 Reasons Not to Forget the Urban-Rural Connection in SDG7

Most international focus on electricity poverty is understandably on remote, rural communities, where 900 million people live without power. But as Pollinate Energy just proved in India, cities also face similar challenges. Pollinate, which distributes solar and other life-changing products to vulnerable urban migrants, just announced surpassing its 100,000 customer.

5 Untapped Apps of Solar Irrigation

The benefits of solar pumps are not restricted to irrigation, in India and globally. Besides reducing pollution and emissions by replacing diesel generators, they can deliver many other applications, which is critical in India, a country where agriculture accounts for 15% of GDP and more than 50% of the population is dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods.

5 Untapped Apps of Solar Irrigation

The benefits of solar pumps are not restricted to irrigation, in India and globally. Besides reducing pollution and emissions by replacing diesel generators, they can deliver many other applications, which is critical in India, a country where agriculture accounts for 15% of GDP and more than 50% of the population is dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods.

Indian enterprises are banking on solar loans for sustainable energy access to tribal hamlets

Access to credit is an important pre-requisite for facilitating access to energy. Owing to marginal and unpredictable incomes, rural and tribal families cannot afford to pay up-front the cost of basic systems. Over the years, solar products, heavily subsidized by multiple donors, have been installed in villages without adequate servicing and maintenance. The consequences have been disastrous as many of the villages have turned into junkyards of dysfunctional systems.

Indian enterprises are banking on solar loans for sustainable energy access to tribal hamlets

Access to credit is an important pre-requisite for facilitating access to energy. Owing to marginal and unpredictable incomes, rural and tribal families cannot afford to pay up-front the cost of basic systems. Over the years, solar products, heavily subsidized by multiple donors, have been installed in villages without adequate servicing and maintenance. The consequences have been disastrous as many of the villages have turned into junkyards of dysfunctional systems.

Distributed Renewables = Jobs and Business

India is a leader in the global surge in renewable energy jobs. According to IRENA’s recent 2017 report, India currently represents 385,000 jobs, making it the 4th largest national jobs market behind China, the United States and Brazil. Meanwhile, new CEEW and NRDC research projects India will create 1 million jobs by 2022 if the government hits its target of 175 GW of renewable energy. Within this greater context, delivering power to India’s 269.8 million unnelectrified rural poor offers it’s own distinct opportunity.

The Human Capital Investment: SDG7 and the Renewable Energy Generation

Solving energy poverty is not a technology issue. With affordable new services, performance improvements, and the ability to pay-as-you-go on mobile money platforms, decentralized renewable energy (DRE) can enable the delivery of basic Tier 1 and Tier 2 energy access.

Campaign Update: June 2017

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All will be profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

SELCO: Scaling rural electrification via bank capacity building

The biggest frustration voiced by enterprises looking to deliver last-mile electricity connections to the rural poor is lack of finance. To solve this major roadblock to scale, SELCO Foundation has developed an innovative program that has nothing to do with money. It focuses instead on people and process. Sound boring? Not at all, and it may be a key to fully unlocking the distributed energy transition sweeping the world.

Fact Sheet: Decentralized Renewables: Empowering Women As Sustainable Energy Leaders

Energy poverty is not gender-neutral: women bear the heaviest burden. Distributed renewable energy can not only empower women economically and socially as end users, but the sector itself can hugely benefit by integrating women across the value chain as designers, educators, trainers, managers, and entrepreneurs.

In Conversation with... Jane Ebinger

Jane Ebinger, SEforALL’s director of policy, had a wide-ranging conversation with Power for All, highlighting gender equality, women’s empowerment, the critical need for supporting human capacity more broadly in order to achieve SDG7, and much more.

Video: 1 Million Technicians by 2025

Schneider Electric has pledged to train 1 million people as renewable energy technicians by 2025. This video explains their Access to Energy effort and their success so far in training more than 100,000. In October last year, Schneider signed an MoU with India to establish a center to train trainers and to setup not less than 100 vocational centers to train, in particular, unemployed youth in the field of energy management and solar energy. In April 2017, they also set up a training center in Ivory Coast. For more perspective, also check out our previous interview with Schneider's Thomas Andre on the need for capacity building.

Scaling rural electrification via bank capacity building

The biggest frustration voiced by enterprises looking to deliver last-mile electricity connections to the rural poor is lack of finance. To solve this major roadblock to scale, SELCO Foundation has developed an innovative program that has nothing to do with money. It focuses instead on people and process. Sound boring? Not at all, and it may be a key to fully unlocking the distributed energy transition sweeping the world.

The Human Capital Investment: SDG7 and the Renewable Energy Generation

7,000 to 20,000 energy enterprises will be needed to scale the distributed solar market and achieve universal electricity access by 2030. But what if we build a market, and there is no one trained to fill the jobs created by those companies? In order to achieve SDG7, we must follow a simultaneous two-track process: addressing both the supply and demand for the human capacity needed to scale DRE.

How distributed solar can save India $10 billion, eliminate 5% of emissions, increase farmer incomes

An innovative project in India to aggregate power generated from microgrid-powered solar irrigation into farmer-owned electricity cooperatives is showing impressive results, with the potential to save India’s government $10 billion in farm power subsidies, conserve scarce groundwater and eliminate 5% of India’s total GHG emissions.

Bihar calls on investors to help decarbonize

Bihar’s Energy Minister, Shri Bijendra Prasad Yadav called on investors to come to Bihar state, one of India’s most electricity poor, to help achieve bold new renewable energy targets and decarbonize the economy.

Utilities partner with micro-grids in India to provide rural power access, save money

In an attempt to address electricity poverty in India and make uninterrupted power accessible to all, the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras, in conjunction with several utilities, has pioneered work on solar-powered direct-current (DC) micro-grids that have reduced system costs by about 50%. The project has so far connected around 9,000 homes in 11 states.

Multi-Billion Dollar Africa-India Partnership Aims to Eradicate Electricity Poverty

As this CNBC Africa interview with Power for All shows, the pieces are falling into place for an important collaboration between India and Africa to end energy poverty. The stakes are high, as sub-Saharan Africa and India account for over 80 percent of the world’s 1.1 billion unelectrified.

“Utility in a Box” — a mini-grid solution for scaling last-mile connectivity

Prototypes of an integrated, standardized “Utility in a Box” (UiB) are being deployed in rural India starting this month, with the goal of significantly reducing the cost of mini-grid systems and contributing more significantly to India’s goal of national electrification by 2019.

Mini-Grids Fueling Micro-Enterprise in Rural India

Case study: Apparel manufacturing in Kamlapur, Uttar Pradesh

India sees launch of 1st solar TV service

Simpa Networks, a leader in providing affordable solar power to households and businesses in rural India, today announced the launch of Magic TV, the country’s first solar-powered Pay-as-you-Go (PAYG) satellite TV solution.

Indian women scaling distributed power to 100,000s of rural households

Jaipur-based Frontier Markets is pursuing a energy revolution in rural India through the power of women. The start-up is expecting to more than double to 500,000 the number of households it reaches with distributed renewable power solutions this year.

It’s time for a grid, mini-grid marriage in India

India is pursuing national electrification at a breakneck pace, but in order for last-mile connectivity to become a reality for all Indians, better coordination is needed between grid operators and private mini-grid ESCOs, according to a new report.

How distributed solar power is improving healthcare delivery in rural India

Over 28,000 Primary Health Centers (PHCs) serve as the backbone of public healthcare in rural India. Yet access to quality care is still a serious issue, since PHCs are often too under-staffed, under-financed, under-equipped, or under-serviced to be able to provide round-the-clock care.

Is cold storage the next green mini-grid "anchor tenant"?

Many of India's leading mini-grid developers launched their businesses by powering remote telco towers close to communities lacking reliable electricity. While this model has provided guaranteed off-take and revenue, the search is now on for additional (and more productive) anchor loads as the mini-grid market evolves and innovates.

Is cold storage the next ‘killer app’ for green mini-grids?

Many of India’s leading mini-grid developers launched their businesses by powering remote telco towers close to communities lacking reliable electricity. While this model has provided guaranteed off-take and revenue, the search is now on for additional (and more productive) anchor loads as the mini-grid market evolves and innovates.

Bihar sets growth target for solar, mini-grid

Bihar state, one of India’s most electricity poor, announced a new five-year renewable energy policy that targets 3 GW of solar capacity, including 1 GW of rooftop solar and 100 MW of green mini-grids.

Goyal “most important individual for the future of energy”

A very interesting blurb from “Energy Source”, the weekly newsletter from Financial Times US Industry and Energy Editor Ed Crooks, in which he suggests that MNRE minister Piyush Goyal is playing a central role in the global clean energy transition.

India’s Power Surge: A Paradox of Plenty?

India’s state power ministers convened in Delhi recently for an unusual group meeting. The event had a dual purpose: partly to celebrate how far India has come in rebuilding its power sector, and partly to lay out a roadmap for confronting the challenges that remain. My recent journey through 11 of India’s 29 states, speaking with senior power officials, confirms that India has made incredible progress in tackling its power generation deficit. Increased generation capacity through new additions of renewables and greater efficiency and reliability of coal stocks for thermal power plants is coupling with the success of India’s incredible demand-side measures to create a perfect storm of plentiful power. However, the next set of problems for its power sector are in some ways more difficult to confront. To address those problems, India will have to employ a diverse and creative set of solutions.

“25x25”: A Collaborative Vision to Scale Access

It’s been two years since Power for All launched at the United Nations Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) forum on May 21, 2015. Since then, the campaign’s greatest successes—from elevating messages on the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector with nearly 1 billion media impressions or securing ecosystem-wide commitments from government, private sector and civil society to grow DRE in energy-poor countries—have been possible by working with and through our nearly 200 partners around the world.

Campaign Update: May 2017

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Power for All Perspective: Electricity access status report

Two new reports from the World Bank - the Global Tracking Framework 2017 and the Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE) - give a snapshot of where we stand in the fight against electricity poverty. The verdict: we've got a lot of work to do, and not a lot of time to do it in. So instead of having to read a combined 500 pages, our PEAK research team pulled together a 2-page summary, with a dash of perspective. The clock is ticking, so get reading.

In Conversation with... Dr. Youba Sokona

Dr. Sokona is a leader in energy, environment and sustainable development in Africa. Until recently, he oversaw the African Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI), a pledged $10 billion initiative to unlock Africa’s renewable energy potential to deliver 300 GW by 2030.

Recipe for Success: Sierra Leone

Exactly one year ago, the government of Sierra Leone embarked on a vision to achieve power for all, signing the first Energy Africa compact with the UK government. This resulted in the launch of the Sierra Leone Energy Revolution, a bold initiative to accelerate access to 250,000 homes by end of 2017 and provide universal electricity access by 2025.

Video: Leaving No Country Behind

Power for All launched "Decentralized Renewables: From Promise to Progress", a new policy-focused Call to Action at the SEforALL Forum, and two of the co-authors of the report, Rebekah Shirley and Kristina Skierka, discussed the findings during a Facebook Live session during the Forum. Learn what policy levers correlate to high-growth of decentralized renewable energy, and how governments can embrace and implement necessary reform that leads to universal electricity access.

25x25: A Collaborative Vision to Scale Access

In order to achieve universal electricity access, a much greater level of collaboration is needed, as is the level of our collective ambition. In our May newsletter, Power for All asks the question: what if we could extend the successes of East Africa to 25 other countries by 2025? Or more? That's what we want to do. If you do too, read on and let's start a movement together

Scaling Solar Irrigation in India (and Africa)

India’s market for solar pumps for irrigation and drinking water was virtually non-existent in 2011, when Claro Energy was founded. But recent attention from federal and state governments, including subsidies, has created a $700 million annual market that is set to expand rapidly.

Claro Energy: scaling solar irrigation in India (and Africa)

India's market for solar pumps for irrigation and drinking water was virtually non-existent in 2011, when Claro Energy was founded. But recent attention from federal and state governments, including subsidies, has created a $700 million annual market that is set to expand rapidly.

5 Ideas to Consider to Make Universal Energy Access a Reality

Our global goal of extending access to modern energy services to all people by 2030 will remain a distant reality unless there is a fundamental shift in how we implement plans to expand access.

Simpa Networks and its “Solar On Every Indian Rooftop” Vision

At the end of the day, residential rooftop solar is a finance business. Whatever the business model - leasing, paygo, micro-finance - it's all about managing money, while on the investment side, it might be bundling small projects and securitizing them. So it's not surprising that the new CEO of Indian market leader Simpa Networks is a former CFO and banker - Piyush Mathur.

A joint Call to Action in Zimbabwe

In a joint ‘Call to Action’, the Government of Zimbabwe, Private Sector and Civil Society Make Bold Commitments to Build the Distributed Renewable Energy Market and Accelerate Progress towards Universal Energy Access

Power for All Report Pinpoints Policies to Accelerate Energy Access for 1 Billion Rural Poor

April 4, 2017—A groundbreaking report released today by Power for All identifies the five most important national energy policies needed to end electricity poverty for approximately 1 billion rural poor (mostly living in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia), and outlines the steps governments can take to implement those policies, in particular the integration of decentralized renewable (also known as distributed or “off-grid”) solutions into energy infrastructure planning and build-out.

Act Now

To change the energy access trajectory we need to reach a huge audience: everyone from politicians to professors, energy users to investment bankers, local women's’ groups to tribal leaders. Help us spread the message and get this report in front of as many people as possible. While the traditional utilities have the cash, institutional reach and political influence, we have people power.

Campaign Update: April 2017

New York, 3-5 April, Sustainable Energy for All Forum Power for All's advocacy and communications team joined the forum to launch our latest Call to Action, meet with partners and to hear the latest developments in energy access.

Fact Sheet: Tracking Energy Access Targets

Over 1.2 billion people worldwide live in energy poverty, yet many governments are missing key opportunities to use targets and policies to catalyze rural electrification and rapidly increase access to decentralized renewable energy solutions.

Catalyzing National Action

Our Call to Action has been executed at the national level in Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe and Nigeria through bringing together stakeholders to make commitments to accelerate distributed renewable energy (DRE). Here are some highlights from the launch events:

Infographics

The policy environment for decentralized renewable energy plays a huge role in how fast electrification can proceed. This graph shows how many low energy access countries have enabling policies in place, and makes clear the logic behind our call for action.

Promise to Progress: A Policy Call to Action

A Policy Roadmap for Clean, Rapid Rural Electricity Access

Video: A Message to Policy-makers

Zimbabwe has a national electrification rate of 40%. Its ageing electricity grid infrastructure, which has suffered from years of underinvestment, is currently dependent on power imported from South Africa. Despite efforts being made to expand the grid’ generation capacity, population growth and energy demand are growing fast and the grid is failing to keep pace.

Promise to Progress: A Policy Call to Action

It’s time to move from promise to progress for decentralized renewable energy (DRE). This week, we launch a groundbreaking report, based on detailed market analysis, which reveals the five policies national governments can adopt to reach universal energy access before 2030. Join Power for All and its partners as we urge policy-makers to take rapid action to end energy poverty. Read the report, 'Decentralized Renewables: From Promise to Progress', and share the key messages in this Call to Action

Sierra Leone Makes Bold Commitments to Universal Energy Access

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone, March 22, 2017—The Sierra Leone Government, civil society and private sector joined forces today in a Call to Action on energy access. At the event, attended by the Energy Minister and leading civil society and private sector representatives, each group made powerful commitments to undertake activities that will accelerate the growth of the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) market—vital for reaching 6 million people living in energy poverty.

Nigeria Launches Call to Action for DRE

The Government of Nigeria, civil society and private sector joined forces last week in a Call to Action on energy access. At the event, attended by Federal Ministry of Power Permanent Secretary, Engineer Louis Edozien, a range of companies, civil society organizations and the rural electrification agency made powerful commitments to undertake activities that will accelerate the growth of the distributed renewable energy (DRE) market—vital for reaching Nigeria’s unelectrified population, which has grown from 44 million to 75 million since 1990 (SE4ALL, 2015).

Nigeria Call to Action

Nigeria has one of the greatest energy access challenges in the world, with an unelectrified population of 75 million people (SE4ALL, 2015). Decades of policy focused on grid expansion have not only failed to deliver improvements in energy access; they have failed to keep up with population growth. The unelectrified population has grown from 44 million in 1990 to 75 million in 2015—an increase of 70%. The cost of the energy access deficit is huge, and is borne by households, businesses and the government.

Decentralized Renewables: From Promise to Progress

Despite the U.N.’s goal of ensuring access to affordable clean energy for all people by 2030, default approaches—primarily extending conventional electricity grids—are not meeting the needs of the one billion-plus energy impoverished, who largely live in rural areas.

Designing Energy Markets of the Future

A Power for All survey of leading decentralized renewable energy (DRE) companies has revealed the practitioner's view of priority policies for market growth. Designed to complement a wider study on national policy and energy access—to be released on March 22—the survey captures insights from 23 DRE companies which, combined, provide pico-PV, solar home system (SHS) or mini-grid services to over 2.7 million households. Asked to rank the importance of policy instruments—national energy policy, financial policy and regulation, and technical regulation—in supporting their local business operations, the results provide front line insight into the policy actions needed to scale DRE and boost energy access. Check out the findings below, and stay tuned for the full report.

Sierra Leone Call to Action

Power for All worked with REASL to develop Sierra Leone’s first-ever recommendations from a renewable energy industry association, following a series of workshops focused on developing REASL’s governance structure, strategy and plans.

Designing Energy Markets of the Future

The decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector has helped 100 million people gain access to clean energy, saved billions of dollars for families living under the poverty line, and improved health, welfare and education––and it has done so with only limited planning and policy support. So what would success look like with more support, and which policies would make the most difference? Our March newsletter explores the findings of a Power for All DRE company survey on the most effective levers for market growth. In this article, learn which actions practitioners think would turbo charge energy access

Bangladesh: scaling energy access and an IDCOL 2.0 vision for 100% RE

For two decades, Bangladesh has been the testing ground for using distributed solar to achieve energy access at scale. The main vehicle for this remarkable experiment has been the unremarkable-sounding Infrastructure Development Company Ltd. (IDCOL), which—in 2004—started to finance a Bangladesh solar home system (SHS) program using the innovative financial and technology packages I designed and implemented as the Founding Managing Director of Grameen Shakti in 1996. Today, this public-private partnership, backed initially by the World Bank and involving more than 60 NGOs and social enterprises, is anything but ordinary, having lifted up an entire generation.

India: National Access Target Good; National DRE Better; State DRE Best

India grabbed headlines in April 2015 when the Modi government pledged to achieve universal energy access, aka Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7), in four years. It was and remains a world-leading commitment, and coupled with a 175 GW target for new clean power generation by 2022 (including 40 GW of grid-tied rooftop solar), it triggered a wave of new investment and market growth.

Video: Africa Energy Indaba

The Power for All panel at the Africa Energy Indaba 2017 brought together some of the sharpest minds in the sector to ask: "How far and fast will distributed renewables go?". The result was a conversation that challenged the status quo.

In Conversation with... Johanna Diecker

Exemptions from tariffs and taxes support young industries, attract companies to new markets, and enable them to reduce the cost of products for consumers—helping millions to access goods and services for the first time. In the energy world, exemptions from tariffs and VAT on decentralized renewable energy (DRE) products, are enabling companies to bridge the affordability barrier.

Campaign Update: March 2017

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewable energy (DRE)—and get involved!

New energy boss targets access, Africa as World Bank priorities

Riccardo Puliti, the newly appointed head of energy and extractives at the World Bank in charge of investing $8 billion a year, says that Africa and India will be the bank’s main focus, and he will pursue an all-of-the-above approach, with a major focus on natural gas and renewables, while coal will remain off limits.

Change Minds, Activate Markets

Accurate data and education about new energy solutions is critical for making informed choices––particularly for energy access. Whether a consumer, policy-maker, business owner, or investor, if you don't know an alternative exists, how can you choose it? Our February newsletter explores how awareness about decentralized renewable energy (DRE) has already helped improve millions of lives, and is vital to ending energy poverty. In this article, learn about community leaders, determined educators, and innovative awareness campaigns that have sparked a shift to DRE.

Awareness & Action: Video & Visuals

Reaching new audiences, and engaging rural communities is not always easy—but these videos and visuals show how consumer awareness campaigns and materials have helped millions learn about clean distributed energy solutions.

Campaigning: 5 Levers for Change

Simple information-sharing—about technologies, business models and proven approaches to building the market—can lead to profound shifts in thinking and practice. Power for All’s Director of National Programs, Charlie Miller, has overseen the launch of national campaigns in Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe in the past 12 months. In this article, he shares five examples of how awareness-raising has accelerated decentralized renewable energy (DRE) market growth by creating behavior change.

Change Minds, Activate Markets

In a recent Power for All survey of leading decentralized renewable energy (DRE) companies (stay tuned for full results in March), marketing campaigns were pinpointed as “crucial for raising awareness about the benefits” of DRE—with the majority of respondents ranking them first in importance for effective market building programs. In line with both research on reaching base-of-the-pyramid consumers, and the clear upward trajectory of energy access following consumer awareness campaigns, the survey results inspired us to look more closely at the question: What makes a successful DRE awareness campaign? Luckily, there are some impressive examples.

Images: Get Sharing!

Making the switch from a familiar energy source to a new solution is a significant commitment, so peer to peer endorsement and over-the-odds benefits are key. Thankfully, for solar lights and solar home systems, big benefits have led to big recommendation.

Notes from the Frontline: Devergy

This week, Power for All partner Devergy shared an honest, tell-all look at the difficulties they faced when raising awareness of their solar micro-grid technology in rural communities, and the hard work they put in to creating solutions. Read their first-hand account of the challenges they countered attracting new customers, and how they have turned challenges into opportunity.

The best energy access video ever?

Judge for yourself. Watch and learn about the inspirational work by Global Himalayan Expedition in the remotest parts of India

Campaign Update: February 2017

Find out about recent activities, and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Women & Power: Female Entrepreneurs Join Nigeria’s Energy Revolution

“If I have 24 women as entrepreneurs using solar technology, I can earn double my earnings and double my business… I am considering becoming a distributor”, advised one of the attendees of last week’s “Economic Empowerment of Women through Decentralized Renewable Energy” workshop held in Abuja.

Deutsche Bank joins Power for All campaign

Deutsche Bank AG, which recently received Green Climate Fund (GCF) financial support to launch a $3.5 billion debt fund for decentralized renewable energy, has joined the Power for All campaign.

Caterpillar Interview: Micro-Grid Challenges and Opportunities

With the reduced cost of renewable technologies and rising innovation, micro-grids are a growing opportunity in emerging markets, one which is already reducing fuel consumption, lowering emissions and driving energy access. It is an opportunity that has not been missed by Caterpillar.

Extending the Horizon: Access to Finance and Kenya’s DRE Market

Our Director of Research, Dr. Rebekah Shirley, took a post-conference opportunity to explore the catalysts of growth in the Kenyan decentralized solar market. In this article, she shares key insights and reflections from KEREA, Steama.co, Azuri and Tropical Power.

Frontier Markets: Islands, Eagles, States

The buzz around decentralized renewable energy has so far mostly been in East Africa and South Asia, i.e. high-flying Kenya and massive India and Bangladesh. 2017 will see growth of decentralized energy into new frontiers. And thanks to Sustainable Energy for All (SEforAll), we now have a clearer picture of where the biggest opportunities for renewable energy to close the access gap are. The SEforAll “Heat Maps” identify the countries where the electricity deficit is highest, as well as the countries of high-impact for renewables penetration. If you overlay those, factor in which national governments are embracing decentralized renewables, then account for countries where finance and businesses are ready to scale, we have a pretty solid idea of what’s coming in terms of potential “new wins” for the sector in 2017, including:

Will 2017 Break the Billion $ Barrier?

The end of 2016 has seen a volley of investments in decentralized renewable energy (DRE) companies that will see the year out with a bang for the decentralized renewables sector, including $90 million investment into Lumos Global, a joint venture between Off Grid Electric and EDF, a $20 million investment in Fluidic, and an E14.6 million investment in Mobisol, following Investec Asset Management buying a stake in the company in October. It also saw the launch of two innovative—and potentially—game changing initiatives, a $100 million open fund for solar and storage, and the One for All campaign—an independent, global campaign to mobilize new investors to focus 1 percent of their assets on solutions to energy poverty.

2017: Ones to Watch

No influencer is an island. It takes leadership across a sector to create a movement for change. Given the wealth of stakeholders who play key roles in the decentralized renewables sector, this list is by no way exhaustive, but it highlights a few of the individuals and organizations that will help to shape 2017

Solar Road Show Brings the Energy Revolution to People Across Sierra Leone

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone, December 21, 2016—A series of solar fairs and activities were held across the country last week, and will continue in 2017. The “Solar Road Show” was held to raise awareness of the power of decentralized solar energy as part of the Sierra Leone Energy Revolution.

What's on the Horizon for 2017

$1 billion in investment, new national and sub-national regions on the rise, utilities with attitude, jobs––and more jobs––and unheralded collaboration. It's all in our December newsletter, as we look across the horizon at what 2017 has in store for decentralized renewable energy (DRE). Take a look at what, where, and who to watch in the year ahead.

4 E's: Here Come the Utilities

Long filed under “corporate social responsibility” (CSR), 2017 will mark the year when decentralized renewable energy (DRE) attains legitimacy among the world’s leading utilities as a strategic, core business opportunity.

Beyond Lighting: New Year, New Breakthroughs

“The interest we’re seeing in this round of the Global LEAP Awards, particularly in the innovation prize for off-grid refrigerators, is amazing.” A conversation with Matt Jordan, Director at CLASP, an NGO that leads several programs in support of the Global Lighting and Energy Access Partnership (Global LEAP), is like lifting the lid on a whole new world of possibility: the demand side of energy access, and specifically the role of high-quality, highly efficient appliances. 2017 looks set to be the year this giant market opportunity will burst out of strategy meetings and into the spotlight.

Building a Million-Strong Youth Workforce

A year ago we interviewed Dr. Kandeh Yumkella, the outgoing CEO of Sustainable Energy for All. Sharing his insights on levers for change, Dr. Yumkella listed the key elements vital for a shift to a low-carbon future. One such critical factor: training. To achieve universal access to clean power, he explained, we will need to create a new wave of “installers of solar household systems, LPG distributors, service providers and builders of the internet; so that solar systems and other systems will be proliferating in the millions in various economies”.

New Deal Underway: AfDB launches $500 million Facility for Energy Inclusion

Great news out of Abidjan: the Board of the African Development Bank (AfDB) just approved a $100 million financing package to seed the Facility for Energy Inclusion (FEI), a $500 million pan-African renewable energy access debt fund. This investment approval is the first big step by the AfDB to deliver on its New Deal for Energy in Africa commitments for energy access through decentralized renewables.

X Learning: A 2017 Game Changer

In 2017, the African Development Bank (AfDB) will hold its annual meeting in India for the first time. The AfDB has targeted 75 million decentralized renewable connections in its plan to achieve universal energy access by 2025, while India has its sights on 40 GW of rooftop solar and 10,000 mini-grids in its bid to achieve “24/7 Power for All” by 2019. Imagine the learnings that the two have to share. Next year, also sees the International Solar Alliance (ISA) hit its stride, bringing together 20+ countries with a major focus on energy access through decentralized solutions, and opportunities for cross-learning are bolstered further under the Paris climate agreement plans for regional partnerships and technology transfer—a key to the low carbon transition.

First-of-Kind Solar Pilot in Sierra Leone

Microfinance institutions and renewable energy companies unite to launch first-of-its-kind household solar pilot

News Release: Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria - Launched

Lagos, Nov. 24, 2016 -- Today industry leaders come together for the launch of the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria (REAN) at the West African Power Industry Convention. The launch will be attended by guests from over 100 organizations working in, and supporting, the renewable energy sector in Nigeria.

The Future is Calling: Clean Energy Enterprises are Changing Customer Service in Africa

What are off-grid companies doing that many utilities aren’t? Putting the customer first.

News Release: Community and Civil Society Organizations join the quest to bring clean power to Sierra Leone

Freetown, Nov. 22, 2016 -- Today, community and civil society organizations came together to support the Sierra Leone Energy Revolution, and join the quest to bring clean solar power to all by 2025.

Guest Post: Unlocking Solar Conference Africa, Thoughts from REAN

Hannah Kabir, REAN Member and CEO of Creeds Energy, shares insights on the Unlocking Solar Capital conference in this guest post.

Why the World Needs Decentralized Renewable Energy

Over 1 billion people do not have access to reliable, affordable electricity; they are often forced to turn to polluting, hazardous, and expensive solutions like kerosene, charcoal and diesel in order to fuel their lives.

5 Reasons Decentralized Renewables are a Trump Card for Climate Change and Energy Access

At COP22 the shock of last week’s unexpected election results has many worried that a Trump presidency could jeopardize climate finance and climate action. So it is a good time to remember why the global community, including the United States, must redouble its efforts in support of decentralized renewable energy (DRE). Here are 5 reasons:

From Policy to Implementation: Catalyzing Finance in Zimbabwe's DRE Market

“Grid extension is not the best way to reach communities in the rural areas, and the government is continually developing strategies and policies to support private sector investment and ensure a smooth process to facilitate energy access”. Eng. Steve Dihwa, the Principal Director of the Zimbabwe Ministry of Energy and Power Development kicked off a recent finance workshop in Harare by expressing his strong support for the decentralized renewable energy sector, and its key role in ending energy poverty for the 9 million Zimbabweans who currently lack energy access.

In Conversation with... Ellen Dorsey

“One For All” is a new civil society campaign that seeks to end energy poverty by ensuring universal access to clean, renewable, and affordable energy by 2030. Comprised of leaders from the global development, faith, philanthropy, women’s rights, and health sectors, One For All is inviting partners to help design and launch a global initiative to call upon mission driven investors to direct 1% of their assets in the form of grants and investment capital toward innovative projects that deliver clean, renewable, and affordable energy around the world.

Why more power will combat climate change

The power that will lift hundreds of millions from energy poverty, is the same power that will help combat climate change: decentralized renewables. As world leaders get ready for COP22, we highlight how distributed technologies can significantly reduce emissions, provide clean energy to the people most vulnerable to climate disruption, and improve resilience in the world's poorest communities. In this article, we explain why replacing kerosene lamps and diesel generators with renewable alternatives has been termed the "low-hanging fruit" of the climate world, and call for rapid action to speed up energy access.

Building Better: Why Decentralized Energy Increases Resilience

One of the most pronounced effects of a changing climate is the increase in extreme weather and other natural disasters such as hurricanes and wildfires. These disasters are not spread evenly: of the 30 countries most affected by changing weather, 26 are least developed countries. To put it another way, 423 million people living in extreme poverty are considered likely to experience the impacts of a changing climate. The tragic events of hurricane Matthew in Haiti are just the most recent example.

Fact Sheet: Powering a Climate-Friendly Future

Kerosene lamps and oil-based generators are some of the most polluting power sources in the world—with small diesel gensets creating 2x as much CO2 as coal plants per kWh, and kerosene lights emitting 240 million tons of toxic black carbon—equal to the emissions of 80 coal power plants.

Decentralized renewables: the front line against climate change

As climate negotiators gather in Marrakech for COP22, we must shine a spotlight on the world’s 1.1 billion people living without electricity, not only because they are the most vulnerable to climate change, but because they also offer a roadmap for the rest of the world on how to build a decentralized, democratized clean energy future. This roadmap would achieve universal energy access and, by 2030, eliminate a gigaton of CO2e each year—equal to eliminating the emissions of Germany, the world’s 4th largest economy.

Graphic: Combating Climate Change

By 2030, replacing kerosene lamps and diesel generators with off-grid distributed renewables could save nearly a gigaton of CO2e each year—equal to the annual emissions of Germany, the world's 4th largest economy. Share this graphic and join our call for a cleaner, healthier future!

Video: The Case for Climate Optimism

"Bangladesh is now installing solar PV systems at the rate of two per minute, 24 hours a day". As part of his inspiring TED talk this year, Al Gore highlighted the key role of distributed solutions in ending energy poverty, and blazing the path to a sustainable future.

Decentralized solar is on fire in India

Small and rooftop solar is the fastest growing clean energy sector in India, with a blistering 92 percent compound annual growth rate over the past four years, according to a report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) released today. The segment will continue to see high growth rates, given ambitious government targets (40GW of rooftop solar by 2020), specific rooftop solar policy in most states including net-metering, new business models being tried by entrepreneurial companies and an increasing availability of debt and equity, the report said.

November: Campaign Update

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Kenya's 2020 Target Fires up Market

Kenya’s recently issued target of universal energy access by 2020 has galvanized the decentralized energy market, with companies looking to capitalize on Kenya’s rapid growth. The latest entrant is Berlin-based company Mobisol, who announced plans to open in the East African hub, along with an influx of new equity financing to fuel the expansion.

In Conversation with... Minister Henry Macauley

On 10 May, Sierra Leone launched a pioneering energy revolution to get 250,000 solar lighting and energy products to households and businesses in the country by the end of 2017, and achieve modern energy for all by 2025.

News Release: Sierra Leone Reports Progress with "Energy Revolution" Campaign

Freetown, Oct 28, 2016 -- The Government of Sierra Leone today provided an update on the progress of its Energy Revolution initiative to supply basic power to all of its citizens by 2025.

Market intelligence report for first half of 2016

The most recent market intelligence report from Lighting Global, the World Bank Group’s platform to support sustainable growth of the international off-grid solar market, and GOGLA, the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association, has again shown rapid growth and change in the sector.

Africa’s Leading Mini-Grid Initiative Reports Key Findings

The leading mini-grid program in Africa today released its first findings after nearly two years of deployment in Kenya.

Mini-Grid Momentum on the Rise

Last week saw the launch of the new Africa Development Bank Green Mini-Grid (GMG) Help Desk to build momentum behind the continent’s clean energy development. The Help Desk—operated by Energy4Impact and INENSUS GmbH as part of the SE4All Green Mini Grid Market Development Program—provides catalytic support to the GMG sector. The launch comes as new research anticipates a 60% reduction in the cost of solar PV mini-grids, and as policy-maker support for GMGs has seen rapid growth around the world—notably in India and Nigeria, the countries with the world’s largest number of people living without electricity.

Power to the People

With so much attention on finance and policy, the decentralized renewable energy sector can sometimes lose sight of what we're all really fighting for: the opportunity for people to live better lives. As a new report from our partner Practical Action reminds us: no one knows this more than the people most affected by energy poverty, and we will only succeed if we learn from and empower those living in energy poor communities. In this article, we profile some of the incredible groups and individuals already leading the way. Read about the pioneering communities who built 1000 micro-hydro plants in Nepal, those at the heart of the Kenyan solar energy boom, and more

100+ Partners Driving Power for All

London, Oct. 12, 2016 - Power for All, a global campaign to radically accelerate the adoption of renewable, decentralized energy solutions and eradicate energy poverty, announced today that it surpassed its pledge to recruit 100 civil society and private sector partners. The achievement signifies the increasingly important role that rooftop solar and renewable energy micro-grids will have in achieving universal energy access before 2030.

Fact Sheet: Keeping Families Healthy & Safe

This month, we begin the first in a series of "Powering Development" Fact Sheets to profile the wide-ranging impacts of distributed renewables.

Image: We Support Power for All

'Reaching Power for All will take the Action of Many. And without those who form our campaign—practitioners, advocates, villagers, officials, funders—we can't succeed. To celebrate everyone who is working to achieve energy access, and to mark reaching our 100 partner milestone, we have created a shareable image. We hope you will use it, and join us in demanding that energy access does not have to wait!

In Conversation with... Desh Deepak Verma

Desh Deepak Verma, Chairman of the Uttar Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission tells us how local communities are already championing clean energy mini-grids and why he is urging a shift to decentralized renewables.

New fund to propel decentralized renewables into mainstream

An industry knows it has gone mainstream when the most risk-averse money—institutional investors such as pension funds, insurance companies, banks, hedge funds, endowments—starts to move in. It looks like that's about to happen for decentralized renewable energy—home and business rooftop solar, mini-grids—in emerging economies like Africa.

Power to the People

Decentralized renewable energy will not achieve its full potential in helping end energy poverty unless two things happen: 1. we measure access through a lens of providing “services” (not just megawatts or number of connections) and 2. we harness the power of the poor themselves to shape their energy future. These are the conclusions from the just released Poor People’s Energy Outlook 2016 from Practical Action, an in-depth look at the needs of energy poor communities (households, businesses and social services).

Sierra Leone Energy Revolution Picks up Pace

Innovative financing proposals and local media support for energy access were the outcomes of two workshops held in Sierra Leone to propel the Energy Revolution. At the events, Power for All brought together stakeholders to drive engagement and collaboration in support of the country’s efforts to help families and businesses gain energy access.

Nigerian Ministries, Departments & Agencies Get Behind Energy Access Drive

Nearly 70 participants from 25 government ministries, department and agencies (MDAs) joined a workshop hosted by Power for All and its partners to share knowledge on policies, programs, opportunities and challenges in the decentralized renewable energy (DRE) sector.

Campaign Update: October 2016

Find out about recent activities and the upcoming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Zimbabwe: Solar Fair Success

To accelerate access to distributed clean energy in Zimbabwe, Power for All, together with partners including SNV, Practical Action, Zero, Hivos and the Renewable Energy Association of Zimbabwe held a Solar Fair at Domboshava, 29km outside Harare.

A New “P2P” Grid for Energy Access Emerges in Bangladesh

ME SOLshare is piloting a new business model in Bangladesh that hopes to leverage the country’s explosion of household solar into a peer-to-peer (P2P) utility. Instead of developing mini-grids or installing more rooftop systems, the start-up hopes to tap into the existing 4–5 million home systems that are already widely deployed in rural areas.

Regulator: India's rural electrification a fiction; solution must include mini-grids

The chief electricity regulator in India's most populous state, Uttar Pradesh (UP), has said out loud what many have been saying behind closed doors for a while: India's very high-profile campaign to extend its electric grid nationally by 2019 and provide energy access to every Indian, is distorting the reality on the ground. Desh Deepak Verma, whose UP Electricity Regulatory Commission (UPERC) is responsible for serving 200 million people, said claims of rapid advances in electrification, especially in hard to reach rural areas, must come under scrutiny.

Building a global green economy requires Zambia x100

The latest Global Green Economy Index (GGEI) showed that Zambia is crushing it. The country moved up 16 places in the performance rankings between 2014 and 2016, making it the only emerging economy to be in the top 10 besides Brazil.

News Release: LOCAL Banks explore ways to support the Sierra Leone Energy Revolution

22 SEPTEMBER 2016: Today, representatives from all commercial banks and micro-finance institutions in Sierra Leone join officials from the government and members of the Renewable Energy Association in a workshop to establish ways the financial sector can help to catalyze the household solar market to accelerate energy access.

News Release: Powering Energy Access

21 SEPTEMBER 2016: Today, 25 media houses join a workshop to learn about decentralized solar technologies and how they will help to bring clean, modern energy services to millions of people across Sierra Leone.

Off-Grid Fridge Contest Makes Energy Efficiency "Cool" Again

The 1.4 billion domestic refrigerators and freezers in use worldwide each consume an average annual 450 kWh of electricity, accounting for almost 14 percent of total household electricity consumption. As we work to end energy poverty for 1.1 billion people worldwide, those numbers are sure to rise.

SDG7: one year in, are we on the right path?

In a wake up call to national and international decision makers, the Overseas Development Institute examined the projected progress of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and found that a 'revolution' is needed to achieve SDG7—clean, affordable, modern energy for all—by 2030. Ahead of the first anniversary of the SDGs on September 25, this newsletter highlights how decentralized renewable energy (DRE) must be at the heart of that revolution, and looks at the critical role national policy must play. Here we provide a sneak peek into early findings from research by our Platform for Energy Access Knowledge team, which identifies the policy levers at the center of strong DRE markets in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India, Kenya and Tanzania

Fact Sheet: Making Energy Access Affordable

One of the main barriers to energy access is affordability. Decentralized renewable technologies are bringing clean energy to millions of people at a fraction of the cost.

Guest Post: 5 Lessons from Kenya’s Energy Access Boom

Kenya’s market for decentralized renewables is the fastest moving in Africa. Already 15-20 percent of Kenyan households use solar lighting and the country is home to a pioneering green mini-grids program, thousands of biodigesters and 3,000MW of micro-hydro systems. I was recently invited to share Kenya’s experiences on this rapid expansion with policy-makers in Zimbabwe, as both our countries work to achieve universal energy access by 2030.

Infographic: Why we need a decentralized revolution

To meet Sustainable Development Goal 7—clean, affordable, modern energy for all—by 2030 we need a 'revolution' in progress towards the universal energy access target. This infographic, based on data and analysis by the Overseas Development Institute, is a stark illustration of how far we are off track. But decentralized solutions—such as mini-grids and solar home systems—are key to closing the energy access progress gap, and will ensure that 1+ billion people are not left behind.

SDG7: one year in, are we on the right path?

In a wake up call to national and international decision makers, the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) examined the projected progress of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and found that a 'revolution' is needed to achieve SDG7—clean, affordable, modern energy for all—by 2030. Grading the progress towards SDG7 a ‘D’ (two above a reversal in progress), ODI researchers calculated that the rate of change must be between 3-4 times faster to meet the universal energy access target. A business-as-usual approach will leave a billion people without power in 2030, with the total absolute number of people without electricity in Africa increasing, rather than decreasing.

September: Campaign Activities

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Energy Gang Podcast: Are We Really Solving Global Energy Poverty?

With a 'business as usual' approach to energy access we are anticipated to have more people living in energy poverty in 2030 than we do today.

Michael Liebreich: 3 Trends in Decentralized Renewables and a Revolution

Michael Liebreich, founder of Bloomberg New Energy Finance, is a pioneer in the renewable energy industry and an inspirational evangelist for the ongoing global energy transition.

Market Maturing for Tanzania Mini-Grids

East Africa is a leader in the decentralized renewable energy revolution, and along with India it is the most closely watched market as it relates to scaling mini-grids. This is especially true of Tanzania. What happens in Tanzania will have implications for the success of mini-grids elsewhere.

Ending Energy Poverty is a Team Challenge

In this month's Power for All newsletter, we feature some of the pioneering collaborations catalyzing the rapid spread of decentralized renewable energy, and in the process powering improvements in health, education, agriculture and much more. This article spotlights leading multi-stakeholder clean energy initiatives, and the important role of innovative governments. Learn about the programs helping countries meet their development goals

Campaign Update: July 2016

Power for All will host a media workshop for Zimbabwe press and media to provide an overview of the decentralized renewables sector, highlight the impact of clean energy technologies and profile local organisations and enterprises working to increase energy access.

Fact Sheet: A Faster Road to Energy Access

Energy underpins progress, and is critical for achieving every one of the Sustainable Development Goals. Yet at the current rate—and with traditional power plants taking years to build—universal energy access could take until 2080. Rapidly deployable decentralized renewables can help reach energy goals much faster.

In Conversation with... Leigh Vial

Is Nigeria on the cusp of an energy access explosion? The award-winning Solar Nigeria program has already powered 172 schools and 11 health centers and is now working with private partners to bring solar to over 2.5 million homes.

Insight: 5 World-Changing Energy Access Innovations

Energy access is not just about powering homes and businesses, but creating the energy needed to meet every one of our Sustainable Development Goals. These pioneering decentralized renewable solutions have the potential to plug billions into the information age, combat the biggest global threat to children's health and provide clean water to millions. Check out these five innovations that could help change the world.

The Power of Partnership

From 1,000 communities powered by micro-hydro in Nepal, to over 4 million families electrified with solar home systems in Bangladesh, innovative partnerships are creating big change.

When Governments Bring Partners Together, Markets Flourish

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, who himself grew up studying under the smoky flame of a kerosene light, called energy the golden thread that “connects economic growth, social equity, and environmental sustainability", underpinning every one of the Sustainable Development Goals. Our recent Power for All report, Decentralized Renewables: The Fast Track to Energy Access, highlighted the opportunity cost of waiting to bring power to communities and businesses through traditional energy infrastructure; centralized grid solutions can take up to a decade to come online. Whilst more research is needed to fully understand the foregone benefits that result from centralized grid-only approaches, pioneering governments aren’t waiting. They are seeing the benefits of rapid deployment of decentralized solutions for schools, hospitals and community buildings. Innovative programs are increasing impact by meeting public sector needs whilst jump starting private sector markets for decentralized renewable energy (DRE) at the same time.

Workshop: Zimbabwe Editor Training

On July 29th, Power for All Zimbabwe held an editor's training workshop to showcase the impact of decentralized renewables on homes and businesses, and provide knowledge about the local and global industry. Chiedza Mazaiwana, our in-country Campaign Manager, addressed 10 Senior Editors and Producers from various media outlets in Zimbabwe.

Workshop: Sierra Leone Compact and Energy Revolution

On Thursday 28 July, Power for All Sierra Leone held a successful workshop to further familiarize government officials with the Sierra Leone compact and Energy Revolution targets and activities, and build awareness of the decentralized renewable sector. The workshop particularly focussed on the actions and ownership needed to streamline the importation of solar products, a key part of the country’s plans to catalyse the decentralized solar market and increase access to energy services.

Powering the Next Generation

Jobs engine? Yes. Business catalyst? Yes. Changing the way we can power the future... absolutely. From Africa to India, banks to bakeries, welding shops to water pumps, reliable power from decentralized renewables is kick-starting businesses and boosting employment. This article shows how clean energy is unlocking innovation and driving the “Micro-Enterprise Economy”

Decentralized Renewables & The Rise of the Micro-Enterprise Economy

Decentralized renewable energy has traditionally been under-estimated in emerging markets as only being capable of delivering electricity for home use, and then mostly for basic lighting. “Productive use”—creating goods and services either directly or indirectly for the production of income or value—has been more elusive.

In Conversation with... Erica Mackey

We were excited to catch up with of Erica Mackey, COO and co-Founder of Off-Grid Electric, to hear the latest on the company's pioneering work to catalyze enterprise with their—just launched—'business in a box', 'Light Riders' motorcycle team, M-Power Academy and more.

Campaign Update: July 2016

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

Take Action: Get Sharing!

With 20% more income than the average wage, the female solar engineers of Zanzibar are shining a light on the way decentralized renewables are powering livelihoods—and you can too. Check out these social-media-friendly images, and get sharing!

Webinar: What's ahead for decentralized renewables?

In this webinar, hosted by the Clean Energy Solutions Center, we join forces with REN21 to profile key findings of the 2016 Global Status Report, share updates on the Power for All campaign, and answer questions on the Sierra Leone Energy Revolution, Energy Africa compacts and more.

Generation2030: A Powerful Problem

More than 600 million people in Africa live without electricity, and in just 15 years energy will be needed for another 500 million more as the population soars. Nigeria alone could be home to nearly 1 billion people by 2100, with Africa home to five billion.

Call to Action: Letter to Dr. Akinwumi Adesina

Power for All and 24 partners and allies from across the decentralized energy sector have sent a letter to Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), urging him to fill the newly created role of Vice President, Power, Energy and Green Growth—who will lead the Transformative Partnership on Energy—with an "outside-the-box" thinker who has a keen understanding of new business models and the vital role that innovative, distributed renewable technologies must play in achieving universal energy access. The letter comes after Power for All found that knowledge of distributed energy solutions was not highlighted in the role-criteria which the Bank recently advertised in the Economist.

New Markets, New Opportunities

Increasingly off-grid solar enterprises are creating big impact and significant sales outside the more established markets of East Africa and Asia. Power for All were fortunate to host a panel of expert speakers at the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association Annual General Meeting 2016 to learn about the opportunities and challenges of operating in Nigeria, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

Is AfDB’s new deal on energy forgetting decentralized?

In an advert this week in The Economist, the African Development Bank posted an opening for a Vice President of Power, Energy and Green Growth (VP of PEGG), who it said “will champion the New Deal on Energy for Africa and will lead the Transformative Partnership on Energy for Africa to achieve universal energy access in Africa.” Great news, right?

India's leading mini-grid program shows momentum

The leading renewable energy mini-grid effort in India is showing promising initial results. The Rockefeller Foundation’s USD 75 million Smart Power for Rural Development (SPRD) initiative aims to catalyze economic development by accelerating access to electricity in 1,000 villages in India through promoting a robust and viable mini-grid sector. The Foundation established a wholly-own subsidiary, Smart Power India, to provide support services to energy service companies (ESCOs) to establish mini-grid projects in India. The initiative expects to have 100 plants up and running by end of this month, producing 3 MW of power. As of April, the program had 7,600 customers, with over 90% on-time collection efficiency.

EnergyAccessX: Driving the New Energy Future

What a month! From the focus on energy at the African Development Bank (AfDB) Annual Meetings, detailed sessions at the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association (GOGLA) Conference, new initiatives such as the Sierra Leone Energy Revolution and much more, the past few weeks have provided an unprecedented opportunity to put forward a compelling new vision for universal electrification. None more so than EnergyAccessX, the first-ever Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) parallel program on decentralized solutions. Our June newsletter kicks off with an update from the high profile event.

Campaign Update: May 2016

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

EnergyAccessX: Driving the Energy Future

Clean Energy Ministerial 7 (CEM7), held last week in San Francisco, was historic for a number of reasons—none more so than it was the first CEM to integrate decentralized renewable energy (DRE or DR energy) on the “main stage” of global energy supply conversations via EnergyAccessX.

From Unicorns to Black Swans... EnergyAccessX in pictures

A unicorn on a black swan on Mars? A unique mix of entrepreneurs, thought leaders, technologists, designers and policy experts from around the world came together at EnergyAccessX on June 1, a Clean Energy Ministerial parallel program—and with so many original thinkers in the room, there was no holding back with ideas!

In Conversation with... Justin Guay

We were lucky to catch Justin Guay, Program Officer for the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, to ask him about the groundbreaking initiatives launched this week by the Indian and US government—in collaboration with leading foundations including Packard—which aim to leverage up to $1 billion in finance for beyond the grid energy solutions.

Video: African Development Bank Call to Action

Following the launch of our latest report Decentralized Renewables: The Fast Track to Energy Access at the African Development Bank Annual General Meetings, Aaron Leopold, Deputy Director of Global Advocacy spoke live from Lusaka to CNBC Africa, while Cheidza Mazaiwana, Zimbabwe Campaign Director, highlighted to Business Incorporated how decentralized renewables are combating the country's energy crisis. Watch the interviews below and join the call to action.

Video: Clean Energy Horizons

At the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association (GOGLA) annual meeting in Nairobi in May, we interviewed a number of experts—including leaders from BBOXX, d.light, International Finance Corporation, Solar Kiosk and Zonful—about opportunities they see on the horizon.

From Ladders to Staircases: Is this the future of energy access?

In the run up to the much anticipated Ashden Awards 2016 on Thursday June 9, the Ashden Conference 2016 is held today to explore the question: Moving up the energy ladder: how can we amplify electricity access? On her way to the event we caught up with Kat Harrison, Associate Director of Impact at Acumen and co-manager of the United Nations Capital Development Fund’s (UNCDF) CleanStart Programme Energy Ladder research, to learn more.

News Release: Power for All Releases New Framework for Accelerating Energy Access

Lusaka, May 25, 2016 -- At the African Development Bank (AfDB) annual meeting today, Power for All released a new framework for achieving universal energy access before 2030, which outlines specific actions multilateral development banks (MDBs) can and should take to expedite delivery of electricity to the 1.1 billion people living without access to modern energy services. The framework, which was previewed at the World Bank Spring Meetings in April, is contained in a report titled “Decentralized Energy: the Fast-Track to Universal Energy Access”.

The race is on for energy access in Africa

Your voice needs to be heard. With the release of Power for All’s new report, “Decentralized Renewables: The Fast Track to Energy Access”, we ask that you join in our call to action by sharing these infographics on Twitter and Facebook, calling on the African Development Bank to take steps to accelerate energy access.

Decentralized Renewables: The Fast Track to Universal Energy Access

Seeking the fastest path to universal energy access, Power for All has identified three specific courses of action that Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) can pursue in support of decentralized renewables in order to accelerate clean energy access.

Power for All talks to ZiFM

ZiFM joined Power for All at our national campaign launch in Zimbabwe. Check out their news report, with highlights from the keynote address by Mr Partson Mbiriri, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Energy and Power Development (0.5min), and an interview with National Programs lead, Charlie Miller, on the potential of decentralized renewables to help combat Zimbabwe's energy crisis (1.25min).

Why is one of the world's richest countries deconstructing its grid?

Critics of "off-grid", or decentralized, energy like to say it is not "real" power. These critics prefer centralized energy solutions. But this preference is often both mis-guided and out-dated, especially as the global community attempts to achieve universal energy access by 2030 - i.e. provide electricity for the first time to 1.1 billion people worldwide. Most of those people are poor, and most live in remote areas. How - and when - they get electricity has massive implications - on climate impact, on economic development, on national security, on quality of life and also on energy infrastructure resilience and sustainability.

Can Africa leapfrog to a smart energy system?

Speakers from the energy and financial world came together for a panel at the World Economic Forum on Africa, held in Rwanda this week, to discuss a new energy future. The consensus was clear: achieving universal energy access rapidly requires both centralized and decentralized solutions.

Sierra Leone Launches Energy Revolution

President Ernest Bai Koroma opened Sierra Leone’s first-ever national conference on decentralized renewable energy yesterday, pledging energy access for all of the country’s seven million people in less than a decade. The goal, with a focus on household solar solutions, is part of the government’s post-Ebola recovery plan. Currently less than 12 percent of people in urban areas have access to modern energy, around one percent in rural regions.

Power for All Launches in Zimbabwe

Power for All launched its national campaign in Zimbabwe at an event in Harare. In Zimbabwe, 86% of the rural population is unelectrified and, even in urban areas, stress on the grid leads to frequent power outages. The Power for All campaign aims to catalyze support for rapidly deployable decentralized renewables to accelerate energy access.

Energy Access: From Walk... To Talk... To Run

At the World Bank Spring Meetings this month Power for All launched a Call to Action for Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) to End Energy Poverty before 2030: #endenergypovertyfaster. Directors, Kristina Skierka, Christine Eibs Singer and William Brent conducted multiple meetings to advocate for decentralized renewable energy and showcase the “need for speed” in addressing energy poverty.

In Conversation with... Vivien Foster

Vivien Foster, the World Bank Global Lead for Energy Economics, Markets & Institutions talks to us about the Access Investment Model and how we can reach un-electrified communities faster and most affordably.

Power for All Perspective: Energy Access and the MDBs

Power for All is working with the University of California Berkeley on the PEAK—Platform for Energy Access Knowledge—initiative which is breaking down the latest data on energy access into easily shareable statistics and insights.

The Missing Link in Global Development: Energy Access Opportunity Costs

This article was originally printed in the World Post | 14 April 2016

The Race is On

Join us by sharing these infographics and calling multilateral development banks to take radical steps to accelerate energy access. Together, we can #endenergypovertyfaster!

Campaign Update: April 2016

Find out about recent activities and the up-coming events where Power for All is profiling decentralized renewables—and get involved!

News Release: Development Bank Call to Action

Power for All Launches Call to Action for Development Banks to End Energy Poverty before 2030

Get Campaigning: #endenergypovertyfaster

With over one billion people living without clean, safe power the issue of energy poverty could not be more urgent.

Get the Story: #endenergypovertyfaster

Today, April 14, Power for All launched a Call to Action at the World Bank Spring Meetings urging multilateral development banks (MDBs) to help radically accelerate the pace of energy access for the 1.1 billion people living in energy poverty.

Join the Conversation: #endenergypovertyfaster

Today, April 14, at the World Bank/IMF Spring Meetings 2016, Power for All issued a Call to Action urging multilateral development banks (MDBs) to accelerate the pace of energy access by taking three key steps:

Share the message: #endenergypovertyfaster

Every day that families are trapped in energy poverty, there is a huge cost; a billion people lose out on the health, education, and opportunity that comes with access to clean, affordable power. Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) have much needed goals to end energy poverty but still focus most of their energy funding on projects that take many years to complete. Rapidly deployable decentralized renewables can bring energy access to millions much quicker.

Call to Action: Letter to Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President, World Bank

Power for All and 24 partners and allies from across the decentralized energy sector have issued a letter to Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank Group, urging him to ensure that the successor to Anita Marangoly George, the Senior Director of Energy and Extractives Global Practice, has a strong understanding of new business models and innovative, disruptive technologies such as decentralized renewables. Ms George recently retired and her replacement is currently being sought.

First-of-Its-Kind Energy Access Research Project Launched

We are excited to announce a new partnership between Power for All and the the University of California, Berkeley’s Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory (RAEL)—an energy research and international deployment center— to build a Platform for Energy Access Knowledge (PEAK).

Clean Energy is Changing the Gender Equation

Today women are taking a lead in clean energy access, with nearly a quarter of solar jobs in the US going to women and female solar engineers in Zanzibar able to earn 20 percent more than the average monthly wage. Share this infographic to highlight how women are powering clean energy.

In Conversation with... Sheila Oparaocha

Sheila Oparaocha, Programme Manager of ENERGIA—a network of organizations addressing gender and energy issues—and a member of the Power for All Board talks to us about the critical role of women in achieving energy access.

India: All Homes Electrified by 2019

Is it now or never for decentralized renewable energy in India?

"New Deal" for Energy in Africa a Big Deal for Off-Grid

During the recent World Economic Forum in Davos, the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, unveiled details of a hugely ambitious “New Deal for Energy in Africa”, which, if fully implemented, has the potential to fundamentally reshape the continent. The New Deal brings together a “transformative partnership”, including the Africa Energy Leaders Group, the Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa, SE4All, Power Africa and the U.K.’s Energy Africa Campaign. Between now and 2025 it aims to use public-private partnerships for innovative financing to add 205 million more connections to the electricity infrastructure. Of that number, 130 million will be on-grid connections, a 160% increase, while 75 million will be off-grid connections—a stunning 20 fold increase from today. It also envisions an increase in access to clean cooking for 130 million households.

The Energy Access Imperative

There is a better path to universal energy access: market-based distributed solutions that directly engage the energy impoverished in creating their own (renewable) energy and controlling their own destinies.

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