Taste of solar power builds appetite for more in Kenya, survey finds
Fuel-seller Nancy Kaisa has for years used solar power to light her premises at the Entasopia shopping center in Kajiado, in southern Kenya. But recently she’s started using energy from a solar mini-grid system to operate her fuel pumps and meet her other energy needs, ditching her diesel generator.
“I now serve more customers a day than before because (the pump) dispenses fuel faster than it used to before, when it was hand-operated,” Kaisa said.
In Kenya, one of the countries leading Africa’s push toward solar energy use, experimentation with solar lighting is fast expanding into broader use of renewable power for business, energy experts say.
A survey of just under 200 users of pioneering rural solar mini-grid systems found that at least 10 percent who bought basic solar lighting and electricity now wanted to move up the “energy ladder” and begin using clean energy to make their businesses or farms more profitable, according to the mini-grid company and a philanthropic investment group.