Winock Energy | People of Africa gripped by Energy poverty
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People of Africa gripped by Energy poverty

Africa remains one of the most underdeveloped regions of the world, in terms of growth and technology. Though in recent years a remarkable change has been witnessed in the continent, however, its pace has to be accelerated meteorically in order to achieve the goal of eradicating poverty soon. A population as high as 620 million approximately live without electricity in this area.

In order to combat this ongoing crisis, Sustainable Development Goals were adopted in New York last year. These goals aimed at providing everybody a chance to lead a life enriched with all the facilities. The seventh goal in the SDG focuses on the significance of the availability of clean, sustainable and affordable modern energy for everyone. It is only through this, that the ultimate menaces of poverty, child deaths and illiteracy will be eliminated. All this without compromising with the condition of the planet, such as climate change.

Case in point Africa: while the region shows an eagerness to build its lagging structures of energy and technology, what pushes it back are the dearth of finances, poor leadership and utter lack of co-operation. Result; only one third of the majestic continent has access to the electricity, with a resultant surge in the factors of poverty and illiteracy, worsening the conditions.

Africans in this deplorable state, resort to produce energy from charcoal and firewood. These methods do not just negatively impact the environment, but also prove to be draining economically. If this trend stays, even by 2030 the universal goal will not be realised.

This is a state of emergency and requires immediate actions for rectification. The good news is that the potential in Africa to accommodate this change immense. African people understand the fast changing technology and they are showing increasing interests towards education and empowerment.

Africa has shown to the world that when it comes to investing in the non-conventional, innovative and fresh ideas for energy development, the region is a gold mine. People are keen on the idea of producing and consuming the electricity on their own rather than depending on the monopolist rule of the nationalised power companies. These companies sideline the poor, while benefiting the rich.

However, now there is a multitude of options available for power generation in Africa. On and off grid solar power generators have been boons for the people of the area. The off grids are used to produce pollution free energy, that is cheap and has transformed people’s life, by being a source for the eradication of illiteracy in children, by providing them light to study and also reducing pressure on forests.

African countries, especially the Sub-Saharan countries, have a huge potential to grow out of the dark that they are plunged into. With further more innovation in the novel ideas such as off grid solar systems, it is very likely that the world will witness the biggest transformation in the history of energy development very soon.