Grand Inga – Current Status and Lessons from the World’s Largest Hydropower Project

[embed][/embed] Grand Inga: Current Status and Lessons from the World's Largest Hydropower Project Richard Swanson Rich Swanson is an independent consultant, and researcher for a current MIT and UN-WIDER project entitled Africa’s Energy Futures. Rich is also the president of World Partners, a non-profit that helps small businesses in developing countries to grow more rapidly. He is currently working on ... Read More

Better Together: Regional Power Pools in Africa are Worth the Challenge

By Amy Rose Despite an abundance of energy resources, electric power systems in Africa have been slow to develop, leaving a large portion of the population in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) without access to electricity. The growing interest in regional power pools across the continent could dramatically alter that trend, overcoming key barriers to investment and improvement in SSA’s electricity infrastructure. … Read More

Launching a New Way to Explore Energy and Human Development

By Yael Borofsky and Sarah Dimson The conversation on energy in the developing world revolves around a paradox. Opportunities for innovation in the energy sector to drive economic growth are rapidly expanding throughout much of Africa, India, and parts of southeast Asia. At the same time, the conversation in the western world often seems stagnated around simple lighting solutions that … Read More

Uncertainty in Grid Expansion and Grid Supply: A Case Study in Bihar, India

By Patricia Levi and Yael Borofsky India’s issues supplying reliable electricity to its population are well known and sometimes high profile. Just think back to the lack of adequate generation that contributed to the massive blackout in 2012. The new government under Prime Minister Narenda Modi has been promising rapid extension of the electric grid and solar power to provide … Read More

What Does ‘Energy Access’ Even Mean Anyway?

By Patricia Levi and Yael Borofsky What does it mean for a household or business in a developing country to have electricity access? This apparently simple question has a complex and contested answer. Should a household with a solar panel that runs a light and a cell-phone charger be deemed ‘electrified’? How about a home connected to an electricity grid … Read More

On Educating an Interdisciplinary Generation of Energy Access Experts

By Lily Mwalenga and Zak Accuardi This January marks a year since we organized an introductory course on the subject that e4Dev was founded to explore: energy access in the developing world. Achieving universal energy access will require the application of diverse expertise in a relatively coordinated way. This diversity presents a unique opportunity and challenge for educators, who will … Read More

Off-Grid Energy in India: Identifying Early Adopter Markets

By Sanjoy Sanyal and Pamli Deka The potential market for off-grid electricity in India is large, with more than 300 million people living without access to electricity. With such an expansive market, how do enterprises decide where and how to focus? Is the market selection based on a robust methodology or something more akin to a blindfolded dart game? Should … Read More

Solar Pumps: India’s Potential to Link Electricity Access and Irrigation Needs?

By Varun Mehra Currently, over 300 million people in India lack access to electricity — almost the size of the entire population of the United States. Increasing energy access has become an economic opportunity, with companies providing off-grid (i.e., solar lanterns or solar home systems) or microgrid solutions (localized, small-scale generation typically serving residential loads). These options help rural customers move … Read More

Energy Access in Space: The Final Frontier in an Electrification Debate

By Zak Accuardi When it comes to bringing affordable, reliable electricity to all people, opinions differ on the ideal problem solving approach. Energy specialists think a lot about energy density and quality/intermittency. Economists think about cost. Planners think about space. Each of these caricatures highlights an important consideration, but apparently the energy world needs more planners because space seems to … Read More