30 December 2015, Sweetcrude, Lagos – Sub-Saharan Africa has achieved increased access to energy through the activities of small and medium power companies.
This is according to a report by Global Village Energy Partnership International, GVEP, a London-based non-govenmental organisation, NGO, working with local energy firms in developing countries to increase access to affordable and sustainable energy solutions.
GVEP, which maintains operations in Senegal, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda and the Caribbeans, stated in the report that this development has helped provide a safer and healthier environment to over 12 million people.
The report also indicated that at least 11.7 million people in sub-Saharan Africa are enjoying improved access to renewable energy technologies which do not pose a threat to the climate.
The GVEP 2015 Annual Review indicates that off-grid service providers have significantly contributed toward access to affordable energy and the development of a low-carbon economy.
This has helped save at least 8.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide so far, while $59 million (about Rwf44 billion) has been leveraged to support the development of a wide range of energy businesses.
The report notes that it is important for sub-Sahara governments and stakeholders to increase investments to support the expansion of energy access in off-grid areas to reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development.
It indicates that achieving universal access to electricity will require a combination of grid-based and off-grid solutions, noting that 60 per cent of the power required to achieve universal electricity access would come from off-grid solutions.