Weekly Review December 1-7

Dec 7th, 2012

We’re always looking for entrepreneurs who are willing to tackle the challenge of making alternative energy affordable. This week, we’re sharing news on others also looking for ways to make the cost of energy affordable around the world.

Powering Up: Innovating to Solve the Cost of Energy in Africa” by Will Mutua on Afrinnovator
Despite the discovery and availability of oil and gas across Africa, nations are still struggling to meet their populations’ increasing energy demand. It’s a problem that’s stagnating the growth of telecommunications sector and more across the continent. The lack of reliability and the high capital costs are burdens for individuals as well as businesses both large and small. Afrinnovator calls for innovation to remedy the situation in order to allow Africa to reach its potential.

5 reasons why the off grid solar revolution will be driven by cell phones” by Ryan Levinson of SunFunder on GigaOM
Cell phones will help solar energy leapfrog the electric grid, just as they did to landlines in Africa. Ryan Levinson, founder of SunFunder, describes the top five reasons why this is likely to happen, and who is leading the charge towards a radical step in development efforts. ]

What if You Can’t Afford LEDs” by Elisa Wood on Renewable Energy World
LED (light emitting diodes) light bubs represent the classic paradox of cost-effectiveness vs. affordability. We frequently see solar-powered LED solar lanterns throughout Africa and India, where they are often used for lighting by consumers who have no or unreliable access to the grid. According to Renewable Energy World and the Department of Energy, the cost of LED systems are coming down but still require significant capital expenditure, a problem for both developed and developing markets.

IFC Helps Simpa Scale up Mobile-Based Affordable Solutions for Clean Energy” from the International Finance Corporation
Simpa is leading the way in leveraging mobile technology to make clean energy affordable. The IFC is now supporting Simpa’s efforts to provide energy access to 500,000 rural Indians over the next three years.

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