Off-Grid Renewable Energy Is Helping Tackle Two of Africa’s Biggest Problems
By Yomi Kazeem
The rise of decentralized renewable energy as a solution to electrification rates across Africa—the slowest growing globally—is also bringing with it a solution to high unemployment.
As startups in the space continue to prove the viability of their services as alternatives to traditional power grids, they’re starting to create direct jobs at a scale that’s already comparable to local utilities.
A “job census” report of the renewable energy sector shows the sector’s workforce—in terms of direct, formal jobs—is already comparable to traditional power grids and utilities in Nigeria and Kenya (the report’s analysis also included India and reflected similar impact). The report by Power for All, a non-governmental organization focused on promoting renewable energy, categorizes pico-solar appliances, solar home systems and mini-grids as well as standalone and grid-tied commercial and industrial systems as part of the renewable energy sector in its analysis.
Photo courtesy of Sameer Halai.