Investments in off-grid power in Africa and Asia have skyrocketed in the last five years. Thirty times more money went into the sector in 2018 compared with 2013. More than $500 million was invested in electrification in 2018, the first time this dollar level has been exceeded, an analysis by Wood Mackenzie found.
The money is finally bringing lights, cellphone charging and electric stoves to millions of people who have long had to rely on kerosene and wood. But is the money getting funneled to the right projects? Can they scale to meet the demands of a high-energy society? And what are the bottlenecks in international finance preventing these solutions from expanding more rapidly?
Ben Attia joins us on The Energy Gang for a deep dive into the state of the market. Ben has spent years immersed in the world of solar home systems and off-grid renewables in the Middle East and Africa. He leads emerging coverage of off-grid power markets for Wood Mackenzie.
We’ll follow the money, the markets and the business models and ask whether distributed renewables are providing a real alternative to slow grid connections.
- Wood Mackenzie: Free report: Strategic Investments in Energy Access (by Ben Attia)
- GTM: Investment in Off-Grid Energy Access Totals $1.7B Through 2018
- MIT-Rockefeller Commission Report
- Financial Times: Mobisol, A Cautionary Tale for Impact Investors
- Kahawatungu: M-Kopa Unveils Solar Refrigerators for Off-Grid Customers
- Forbes Tata Power Aims to Boost Electricity for Rural India
- Bloomberg: Tata, Rockefeller Foundation Plan 10,000 India Microgrids
- South Africa Business Day: Digital Tech in Solar Will Be Big Help to Emerging Countries
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