Things are looking up in Africa. Solar is already transforming school performance, and solar lamps are saving lives by replacing kerosene.
As solar and other decentralized energy technologies are being paired to provide access to the internet and further energize the explosive growth of cell phones, we are seeing children get educations, businesses find customers, and communities get lifted out of poverty and marginalization—all the while bypassing the dirty, outdated and slow-to-implement energy infrastructure of the 20th Century.
The latest video from solar development pioneers Solar Aid shows just what a difference a cheap, battery-powered solar lamp can make to children and their families who have previously been stuck using kerosene. And the best part is that because these lamps are now cost competitive with kerosene in many communities, and because they are being distributed through models of micro-entrepreneurship, we can expect to see this trend grow like wildfire well beyond the potential of your typical "charity" project.
May we live in interesting times.