News 2013

Alliance for Rural Electrification recognizes Sunlabob in ‘Best Practices’ report

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International report highlights Sunlabob solar PV village mini-grid in rural Laos

Sunlabob’s experience with renewable energy village mini-grids was this week included in a publication by the Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE) that highlights successful models for off-grid energy access in developing regions around the world.

The publication, “Best Practices: What renewable energies can achieve in developing and emerging markets,” highlights Sunlabob’s work to develop a solar PV mini-grid that provides reliable, affordable electricity to Ban Phakeo, a rural community of approximately 100 households in Luang Prabang Province, Laos.

Sunlabob’s case study can be viewed here.

“Providing clean energy in poor, rural areas in a way that is sustainable – technically, economically and socially – is a challenge,” said Andy Schroeter, co-founder and CEO of Sunlabob. “Compiling successful approaches to rural electrification from around the world, as the Alliance has done, can be an important tool for energy decision-makers to draw from as off-grid renewable energy grows globally.”

The ‘Best Practices’ report not only details Sunlabob’s technical approach to off-grid electrification, but also the company’s community-based operational model that employs two villagers to manage and maintain the system and relies on a Village Energy Committee to provide local governance of the energy enterprise.

“As demonstrated through Sunlabob’s experience in Asia-Pacfic and Africa – and highlighted in the ‘Best Practices’ report – local inclusion and self-sustaining approaches are a core factor to successful off-grid rural electrification programs,” added Schroeter.

The publication was officially launched this week in Berlin, Germany at the high-level meeting “Economic Development Globally - Renewable Energy Developing and Emerging Countries” organized by the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development.

“What this publication comes to prove once more is that reliable, cost-effective and sustainable energy solutions are already being implemented worldwide. To ensure energy poverty is eradicated they now need to become mainstream,” added Michael Wollny, vice president of the Alliance for Rural Electrification, during the launch event.

The full report can be viewed here.