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A Consumer Education Campaign to educate consumers on the benefits of using modern and quality off-grid lighting was launched in Ethiopia by the World Bank.
Through the program, Lighting Africa-Ethiopia, the new campaign aims to assist consumers to make informed decisions when purchasing different off-grid lighting products.
Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy, Alemayehu Tegenu, who was present at the launching event on Tuesday, September 22, underlined that having access to modern energy provides several opportunities for people as well as the economy.
“Access to modern energy provides productive capacity for stimulating economic development and reduces conditions of poverty,” he said.
Lighting Africa-Ethiopia is a World Bank program supported by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) that aims to address electrification needs of rural, urban, and sub-urban consumers who have no access to electricity. It seeks to offer an alternative to fuel-based kerosene lamps and candles, which are currently the most commonly used lighting sources among those without grid electricity.
Alemayehu further said that these kinds of modern lighting systems will play a role in improving health, air quality, education as well as the hardships imposed on women and children.
Lighting Africa-Ethiopia is a key component of the Scaling-Up Renewable Energy Project (SREP) developed in cooperation with the Ethiopian government through the Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Energy and other donor partners.
Currently, 85 percent of rural households in Ethiopia rely on fuel-based light sources, predominantly kerosene and an average rural household’s expenditure on Kerosene is 38 birr per month. That number accumulates to 6.3 million birr per year.
Data from the World Bank shows that 235 million liters of kerosene is used each year for lighting by rural households and 15,000 tons of black carbon is emitted from that.
Through the Light Africa-Ethiopia program, 1.6 million units of solar lanterns will be disseminated by the year 2017 reaching 8 million people.
A target is set to disseminate 3.6 million units of lanterns by 2020 in the second Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP II) period.