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Utilities 2.0 WON a Reuters Energy Transition Award!

The Utilities 2.0 Twaake Project, spearheaded by Power for All in Uganda, recently won the Socially Responsible Project Award at the Reuters Global Energy Transition 2024. Recognized for its significant social impact, the project connected over 300 new customers and created 60 businesses rapidly, showcasing an effective model to combat energy poverty. The initiative, integrating centralized and decentralized energy sectors, has earned multiple accolades, demonstrating the power of collaborative efforts to accelerate energy access.

Grassroots Power: The Success and Promise of Local Renewable Energy Enterprises

Discover how locally-owned, women-led businesses are transforming renewable energy access in remote rural areas. Learn about the Inclusive Energy Opportunity initiative and its impact on off-grid energy solutions.

Power for All CEO's Remarks at UN General Assembly's Global Stocktake on SDG 7 and Sustainable Energy

Full transcript of Kristina's Skierka's Stakeholder Comments at the "Global stocktaking marking the completion of the UN Decade of Sustainable Energy for All to further accelerate the implementation of SDG 7 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development - General Assembly, Sustainability Week, 78th session"

A Broader Call for Earth Day: Beyond Battling Plastics, Advocating for Clean Energy and Equity

On the 54th Earth Day, Kristina Skierka of Power for All highlighted the distributed renewable energy sector's crucial role in achieving SDG 7 by improving energy access, driving economic growth, and overcoming systemic barriers to foster sustainability and equity globally.

Ten Renewable Energy Trends to Propel SDG 7 in 2024

As 2024 unfolds, the renewable energy sector reaches a pivotal moment, especially in the context of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). With the mid-point of the SDGs passed, there’s an urgent call for a surge in renewable energy to combat energy poverty and meet SDG 7’s target of universal access to sustainable and modern energy.

Resilience and Innovation with Mini-Grids Across Africa

Despite challenges, Africa’s mini-grid sector, with highlights like Husk Power’s $43M funding, grows but still needs more global solar investment.

Solar, Fusion, and Storage: A 2024 Forward-Looking Perspective

This year, short-term electricity storage and long-term fusion technologies are key drivers in the energy sector, with storage crucial for integrating renewables and fusion promising large-scale, carbon-free energy.

Philanthropy Trends: Collaboration, Climate, and Clean Energy in Agriculture

2023 saw global philanthropy pivot to climate and clean energy in agriculture, with key investments driven by collaborations like ClimateWorks and partnerships like Acumen-Green Climate Fund.

Empowering Women with Distributed Renewable Energy

Power for All and IRENA are partnering to explore gender dynamics in the DRE sector, a field ripe for increasing women's participation, as seen in Kenya, Ethiopia, and Nigeria.

Harvesting Renewables: How COP28’s Agricultural Declaration Could Reshape Farming

COP28: 130 nations commit to sustainable agriculture, aiming to triple renewables by 2030 and revolutionize African farming with clean energy.

Regional Collaborations Set to Strengthen, Global Collaboration Confronts Challenges

Just energy transition requires global collaboration, facing socio-economic, geopolitical challenges, with regional cooperation strengthening but global efforts hindered by protectionist policies and unequal standards.

The African Electric Vehicle Odyssey: A Promising Journey Toward Sustainable Mobility

EV adoption in sub-Saharan Africa is accelerating with localized solutions, policy support, and public-private partnerships, as seen in Senegal and Kenya.

Advancing Climate Adaptation: The Impact of Renewables in the Loss and Damage Fund

The Loss and Damage Fund, crucial for aiding vulnerable nations, will continue to struggle with implementation and funding. More closely integrating renewable energy will be key for climate adaptation.

Empowering Africa: Overcoming Challenges to Harness Carbon Markets for Renewable Energy

Sub-Saharan Africa's access to flawed yet vital global carbon markets is challenging; initiatives like the Africa Carbon Market aim to refine these markets and spur economic growth. Integrating renewable energy into the evolving Loss and Damage Fund is key for effective climate adaptation in 2024.

Reshaping the Global Landscape: The Need for a New Bretton Woods in the Era of Green Minerals

In 2024, the demand for green minerals is reshaping global power, highlighting the need for a new Bretton Woods system to ensure sustainable, equitable growth and manage geopolitical and environmental challenges.

Empowering Communities: The Dual Rewards of Renewable Energy

This article explores the critical roles of feasibility studies and community engagement in successful mini-grid projects, using case studies from EM-ONE in Nigeria and the Utilities 2.0 Pilot Project in Uganda.

Behind the Washington Post Headline: The Untold Success of India's Mini-Grid Solar Revolution

In a recent article by the Washington Post titled "India joins rush to renewables, but its rural solar systems fall off grid", the tone suggests that India's efforts in harnessing solar energy, particularly through mini-grids, might be falling short. This perspective, while highlighting certain challenges, overlooks the broader picture and does not provide a comprehensive depiction of the adoption of mini-grid solar technology in India.

UN Food Systems Summit Side Event: Sustainable Agriculture Needs Renewable Energy

As the world battles climate change, agriculture is caught in the eye of the storm. In a recent panel discussion at The UN Food Systems Summit +2 Stocktaking Moment, experts from Power for All, IRENA, and UN FAO discussed the intersection between renewable energy and agriculture, shedding light on opportunities and cautionary tales.

SDG7 Meeting Summary: Accelerating Renewable Energy for Sustainable Development

The UN HLPF 2023 convened its Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report & Policy Briefs 2023 Meeting on Tuesday, July 11, to discuss SDG7 progress and challenges. SDG7 aims to provide affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy access for all. The meeting emphasized the significance of energy access, clean cooking, renewable energy, and financing for sustainable development and climate change mitigation.

Powering Sustainable Livelihoods: India’s Summit on Harnessing Decentralized Energy for Rural Development

Our partner the Council on Energy Environment and Water (CEEW), along with Villgro, hosted an event focused on showcasing the impact of Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE) on rural livelihoods in India.

Powering Agriculture Ethiopia: Introduction of Development and Implementation Partners

Power for All organized a collaborative meeting among advocates of Productive Use of Renewable Energy (PURE) at the Ministry of Irrigation and Lowlands (MILLs) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The meeting aimed to bring together development and implementing partners and foundations working within the PURE space, to join forces on addressing obstructs and capacity needs to activate the PURE market potential in Ethiopia.

African Mini-grid Development Association (AMDA) & ESMAP 7th Action Learning Event (February 27th to March 2nd, 2023)

The 7th Mini-grid Action Learning Event (ALE), held in Nairobi, for the first time in two years brought together key mini-grid sector stakeholders—including governments, developers, international and local financial institutions and financiers, productive use equipment suppliers, and associations—with the goal of accelerating the deployment of mini-grids to help achieve universal access to electricity.

PoweringJobs Census 2022: The Energy Access Workforce Report Stirs Industry Debate

Power for All recently launched the ‘Powering Jobs Census 2022: The Energy Access Workforce’ report which compiles employment data from a comprehensive survey conducted across five countries and provides evidence of the potential of decentralized renewables to help achieve both United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 7 and 8.

YEEP: An Innovating Program Closing Skills Gaps for Youth in Energy in East Africa

Young people looking to join the Energy space in Africa struggle to find internship opportunities to gain work experience that is often a prerequisite to enter into the job market. They also struggle to pay for certification programs, another entry barrier into the industry.

Power for All and Student Energy Partner to Accelerate Youth Careers in Clean Energy

On this International Youth Day, themed ‘Intergenerational Solidarity’, Power for All and Student Energy are pleased to announce their official partnership in the Student Energy Career Training (SECT) program supporting young people to start their careers in clean energy.

Youth Leaders in SDG7: Dr. Mohamed Alhaj, Founder and Director, Clean Energy 4 Africa and his youthful team

As part of International Youth Day, we reached out to Dr. Mohamed Alhaj, the founder and director of Clean Energy 4 Africa (CE4A), and some of his youthful team members for their insights on the role of Africa’s youth in energy access and transition. CE4A is a youth-led think-tank that promotes renewable energy in Africa. It is considered one of the top 100 youth initiatives globally that support SDG7.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

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.

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.

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]

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.

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.

The New Activists

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

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.

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

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

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

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.

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

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)

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

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

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.

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.

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 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).

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.

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.

Power for all, always

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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!

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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

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:

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.