Smart Villages News 124 – Calling All Photographers And Entrepreneurs

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Dear Subscriber,

There have been two refrains we’ve heard during our near 3-year journey to the front-lines of off-grid energy provision. Help us grow our businesses from entrepreneurs and show the world what we are doing already from villagers themselves. So this week I’m delighted to promote two highly relevant competitions. Firstly, ECREEE and IRENA have a deadline of March 25 for applications to their ECOWAS  Renewable Energy Entrepreneurship Support Facility. Secondly we are launching our own Smart Villages Photography Competition, with a deadline of April 30, looking for your visions of how off-grid renewable energy access is making a real difference already. Looking forward to your entries to both. 

Top Stories

Dakar Workshop
ECOWAS Renewable Energy Entrepreneurship Support Facility
To overcome some of these challenges and strengthen the capacity of ECOWAS-based renewable energy entrepreneurs, in April 2015, the International Renewable Energy and Agency (IRENA) and the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) established the “ECOWAS Renewable Energy Entrepreneurship Support Facility”. The establishment was facilitated in partnership with the International Institute for Water and Environmental Engineering (2iE) in Burkina Faso and, through the financial support of the Government of Luxembourg, with the Centre for Renewable Energy and Industrial Maintenance (CERMI) in Cabo Verde. […]

Ecreee (01.03.17)Can South Africa Supply Energy For All?
South Africa produces half of sub-Saharan Africa’s energy and ranks highest on the continent for energy access. Still, 60 percent of rural South Africans don’t have access to the electricity grid, and many more are considered “energy poor.” A new report from ImpactAmplifier, a business accelerator in Cape Town, shows how far South Africa still has to go.The country has no sizeable biogas businesses. Solar-home systems have not been successfully marketed, as they have been in Kenya and Tanzania. Two of three mini-grid installations have failed. […]

Jessica Pothering – ImpactAlpha (28.02.17)China And Pacific Lead In Small Hydro, But Africa Also Growing Says New Report
The global small hydropower market stood at 119.35 GW in 2016 and is poised to rise to 146.65 GW by the end of 2023. On the basis of geography, Asia Pacific will command the lion’s share throughout the forecast period, owing to the increasing demand for off-grid electricity from rural areas of India and China.This press release was orginally distributed by SBWire […]

Digital Journal (28.02.17)

Time For An Honest Conversation About Natural Gas?
Life without access to energy is simply miserable. The most mundane task, such as heating water to cook rice, can require an entire day’s labor to gather both water and firewood. That labor can be physically exhausting, in some cases immediately dangerous, and often with unfortunate health outcomes. […]

Tisha Schuller – ScientificAmerican (03.03.17)

We Will Continue To Depend On Coal Says India’s Pradhan
India’s economy will continue its momentum despite demonetisation and achieve an eight per cent growth next year, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan has said. “Last November, we demonetised 85 per cent of our currency in circulation and even after that India’s GDP continues to grow. According to recent data, growth for the September- December quarter stood at 7 per cent,” Pradhan said in his keynote address at the 2017 Massachusetts Institute of Techn […]

TheEconomicTimes (04.03.17)

EU Commits To 19 New Renewable Energy Projects In Africa
The European Commission continues its leading role in the Africa Renewable Energy Initiative, in line with its wider efforts in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development and the Paris Climate Change Agreement.On 4 March 2017 in Conakry, Guinea, Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, announced the preparation of 19 new renewable energy projects, with a total potential investment of €4.8 billion. […]

Europa eu (04.03.17)

PFAN-Asia Launches Two Calls For Proposals In Asia Region
The USAID Private Financing Advisory Network-Asia (USAID PFAN-Asia), the International Network on Gender and Sustainable Energy (ENERGIA) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), announce a call for proposals for women entrepreneurs in clean energy […]

cti-pfan (20.02.17)

Is Nigeria Really Serious About Solar?
Nigeria, Africa’s biggest oil exporter, may be about to turn sunward to generate more of its power. Senators in the capital of Abuja are debating allocation of $30 million to solar projects in this year’s budget, according to the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria. They’re expected to provide funding for off-grid solar projects, photovoltaic manufacturing, and transmission upgrades, according to REAN Executive Secretary Godwin Aigbokhan. A decision is expected this month. […]

Solape Renner and Tope Alake – Bloomberg (07.03.17)

Solar Power Grows By 50% In 2016
The amount of solar power added worldwide soared by some 50% last year because of a sun rush in the US and China, new figures show. New solar photovoltaic capacity installed in 2016 reached more than 76 gigawatts, a dramatic increase on the 50GW installed the year before. China and the US led the surge, with both countries almost doubling the amount of solar they added in 2015, according to data compiled by Europe’s solar power trade body. […]

Adam Vaughan – TheGuardian (07.03.17)

Women’s Solar Cooperative Blossoms In Lebanon
Today, on International Women’s Day, the women of Deir Kanoun Ras el Ain cooperative in South Lebanon embarked on a quiet revolution. Together with young activists from Palestine, Lebanon and Syria, they completed a solar energy installation that will provide regular and reliable power — and improve women’s lives. The cooperative is proud of their work; making delicious rosewater, apple vinegar, orange sauce, apricot jam, crackers and tomato paste – all without artificial preservatives. But, like many involved in food production, the women work hard for a modest income. […]

Ghalia Fayad – GreenPeace (07.03.17)


New! Smart Villages Photography Competition 2017

Apply now! New Smart Villages Photography Competition 2017
Smart Villages

Webinar on Refugees and Energy 16 March, 3pm UK

Refugees and energy: Meeting the needs of refugees and displaced people
Smart Villages

Energy Entrepreneurs

Lighting up rural Bangladesh
Smart Villages

Aleutia – Mike Rosenberg

ALEUTIA: Solar Classroom In A Box
Smart Villages


World Bank Targets Rural Electrification In Mozambique
WorldBank (01.03.17)Will Gas Be The Answer Ponders Africa Energy Indaba Conference
Engineering News (28.02.17)Renewables Hit 87% Of Energy Generation Claim Kenyan Govt
AfricanReview (28.02.17)

Rapper Akon Now Tries To Light Up The Gambia And Cape Verde
JamaicaObserver (06.03.17)

UAE Participates In EU Clean Energy Ministerial Meeting
Zawya (02.03.17)

Mini-Grid Focus For African Energy Revolution Meting In May
Economist (02.03.17)

Abu Dhabi Close To Funding Mega Solar Plant
Stanley Carvalho – Reuters (05.03.17)


Buyer’s Guide To Grid-Tied Vs Off-Grid Solar
Intermountain Wind & Solar (06.03.17)Social Impact Note Lends $608 Million For Off-Grid Solar In Developing World
PRNewsWire (28.02.17)Advanced Modular PV Hybrid Micro-Grid System For Rural Electrification Applications
PressReleaseRocket (28.02.17)

Micro-Nuclear Sector Lobbies Trump
Nick Rosen – Off-Grid (06.03.17)

Science & Technology

PackLite Solar Phone Charger Inflates Into Light
PR Web (23.02.17)Solar LED Companies Merge
Maury Wright – Leds Magazine (22.02.17)Microsoft Launches Skype Lite For Smart Villages
RuchiSharma – The IndianTalks (23.02.17)

Steel Drum Contains Complete Off-Grid Solar Charging Station
Derek Markham – TreeHugger (22.02.17)

India’s ITT Develops New Battery Tech
TheHinduBusinessLine (23.02.17)

New Study On Variable Renewable Energy (VRE) Challenge Published
Earl J. Ritchie – Forbes (27.02.17)

PAYG Solar And Micro-Grids Become New Class Of Infrastructure Investment
EnergyTransition (27.02.17)


New Zealand Home Owners Go Off-Grid
Sam Kilmister – Stuff (28.02.17)Battery Price War Breaking Out In Australia
Finn Peacock – OneStepOffTheGrid (01.03.17)Smart Village Water Monitoring Project Starts In India
Chuck Dubois – Halma (02.03.17)

Airbnb And SWEA Collaborate On Off-Grid Village Tourism In India
Preeti Zachariah – TheHindu (04.03.17)

Claims That Cheap Chinese Imports Hitting India Solar Producers

More Solar + Battery Storage Installations Planned For Indigenous Australian Communities

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