4,000 villages to get alternative energy by 2017

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STAFF REPORT IBD: As many as 4,000 off-grid villages across Pakistan would get electricity through alternate energy resources, which would help in lessening the increasing burden on the national grid.


The initiative is being executed by the Pakistan?s Buksh Foundation Working in collaboration with local and international partners like Coca-Cola, China Mobile?s Zong, the Imran Khan Foundation and Engro Corporation.


Presently, the Lahore-based microfinance institute Buksh Foundation and the Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) in India have electrified 72 off-grid villages in Pakistan?s Punjab province.


The organization has launched a unique solar energy access model, Lighting a Million Lives, which aims to provide energy access to rural un-electrified areas of the country.


The project with its multifold benefit model, has not only helped in providing a sustainable energy alternative, but has also encouraged female empowerment, increased economic capacity of the rural areas, created literacy about the needs for environmental friendly energy alternatives and the benefits they provide,? said Buksh Foundation CEO Fiza Farhan.


He said that the initiative seeks to empower females in rural communities by putting them in charge of photovoltaic charging stations, which are used to charge lanterns during the day.


By reaching its goal of providing a million lanterns to people the Foundation said it could reduce 1.5 million tons of CO2, save around Rs. 25 billion and reduce oil imports by 6 per cent a year.


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