It’s Blog Action Day all over the world today and the theme this year is Inequality. From my perspective, the main example of inequality in our world today is energy poverty. This is defined by the International Energy Agency as “…a lack of access to modern energy services. These services are defined as household access to electricity and clean cooking facilities (e.g. fuels and stoves that do not cause air pollution in houses).” 18% of the seven billion of us today don’t have electricity and a whopping 38% don’t have a clean way to cook.
The latter has a number of negative impacts, including millions of women and children dying prematurely every year from the black smoke they inhale from scrubwood and dung being burned in poorly ventilated homes. The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is one very important initiative to alleviate the problem through the rapid penetration of new, affordable technologies for these populations.
On the energy side, the UN’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative is a key program leading the charge to provide universal energy access through renewables and energy efficiency.
Here’s a really positive video that embodies the superb vision of the SE4All initiative and all their partners bringing clean, renewable energy to the underserved populations that need it for poverty alleviation, first, and then to advance economic opportunities faster and smarter.