COVID-19 response: Supporting the off-grid energy sector
Access to electricity keeps people connected, protects vulnerable populations, keeps ventilators on and saves lives. Off-grid companies are critical for reaching populations beyond the grid and for more rapid deployment of electricity solutions, for households and for health clinics. Yet, the current pandemic is disrupting their operations and threatening their ability to provide vital power.
Recognizing the critical role these businesses have in protecting vulnerable groups, SEforALL, in conjunction with partners, conducted outreach through surveys and questionnaires to establish a data-driven perspective on both the immediate impact of the pandemic on the mini-grid and solar home systems sectors as well as anticipated impacts related to the economic disruption. The data and information collected and analyzed will be critical to identifying the support and interventions that may be needed for the sector.
We surveyed over 80 Mini-Grid (MG) and Solar Home System (SHS) companies serving more than 1.9 million customers. We obtained data from GOGLA, AMDA as well as Smart Power India and interviewed more than a dozen Mini-Grid and Solar Home System companies to further complement the data.
Harriet Lamb, Ashden: The links between sustainable energy, health and community resilience are clearer than ever.
Energy services are key to preventing disease and fighting pandemics - from powering healthcare facilities and supplying clean water for essential hygiene, to enabling communications and IT services that connect people while maintaining social distancing.
Photo: UNDP Peru / Monica Suárez Galindo