2008 - 2013
In Benin, 70% of the population live in rural areas, where only the municipal centres are connected to the electricity grid, covering only 10 to 15% of the population. Many of the households that could technically connect to the grid cannot afford to do so. One of the ways to overcome these shortcomings in rural areas has been to offer access to energy services. To this end, GERES through SETUP project (Energy and Technical Services for Productive Uses in Benin),has opted to apply its expertise to come up with a practical, structured, comprehensive solution that will promote energy self-sufficiency and, as a result, economic development for communities in Zou.
The GERES hopes that this project can take up some of the challenges of fuel poverty by structuring :
- 27 multifunction platforms offering services appropriate to a large range of foodprocessing or craft applications (milling cereals, soldering irons, etc.).
- 30 self-contained energy centres: some of these will be mobile for use at the side of the field (e.g. grinding unit), while others will operate with photovoltaic technology to recharge batteries and provide lighting for shops.
- Development of a biofuel meeting local needs. Production of pure vegetable oil based on Jatropha can partially replace diesel as fuel. As it is restricted to local demand, the biofuel supply chain encourages community selfsufficiency.
- Local energy assessment to ensure that institutional actors take account of energy access issues in strengthening the local economic fabric.
- European Union
- French Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- POWEO Foundation
- SCAC Benin
- Synergie Solaire
- PlaNet Finance
- the implementing agency of the Ministry of Energy for Rural Electrification and Energy Management (ABERME)
Union of Mayors of Zou
- Housewives and their daughters (3,000 rural households)
- Agricultural producers and women who process foodstuffs
- Craftspeople and traders
- Energy service operators