With more than 70 per cent of sub-Saharan Africa having no access to electricity, and in rural areas as much as 95 per cent, the Rural Energy Foundation (REF) has helped to facilitate access to solar-powered electricity in sub-Saharan Africa, by training and supporting rural retailers.
Kenyacurrently has 1.9 per cent forest cover, which is well below the 10 per cent minimum recommended by the UN. The population of Kenya, especially the rural community, continue to rely on wood for fuel despite its increasing cost.
TU/e researchers want to develop solar cells with an efficiency of over 65 per cent by means of nanotechnology. In Southern Europe and North Africa these new solar cells can generate a substantial portion of the European demand for electricity. The Dutch government reserves EUR 1.2mn for the research.
France's Minister for Ecology Jean-Louis Borloo speaks during a press conference at the Environment Ministry in Paris to present the Mediterranean electricity network project called Transgreen. The project aims at creating a consortium of companies to build a vast network of undersea electricity lines to bring solar power from Africa to Europe, under the leadership of French energy.
German development agency GTZ is installing 15,000 solar energy systems per month in Ethiopia, where only less than one per cent of the rural population uses solar power because of inadequate investment in the sector.