Renewable Energy As The Key to Emergency Aid in Nepal.
According toÂ United Nations report, nearly 90 percent of the population in Kathmandu and its neighboring communities donâ€™t have access to health clinics, schools, storefronts and housing.
Medical workers, rescue teams, food, water, shelter and telecommunications areÂ No. 1Â concerns at the moment, but as time goes on, the U.N. also warns of impending security and communication concerns that could exacerbate those needs, as hundreds of thousands of families are displaced without power. The need for energy to provide lighting at night, charges for cell phones to contact loved ones, and coordinate relief efforts and logistics couldnâ€™t be greater.
Because Nepalese locals and relief groups need reliable energy sources,Â Greenlight PlanetÂ is teaming up withÂ World VisionÂ to bring light and energy to thousands in Nepal.
â€œA large number of people lose their homes, and even if they have a home, a significant number lose power,â€ explains Suvodeep Das, director of marketing at Greenlight Planet â€” a company that provides solar energy and lighting for rural communities. No lighting at night also puts women in danger of gender-based violence and human trafficking, according to the U.N. report.
Humanitarian groups need easily-deployed, clean and reliable energy to operate where there is little to no infrastructure. â€œWhat is also really important is that a lot of people have loved ones, family, friends and relatives who live somewhere else, and thereâ€™s no way to get in touch with them because cell phones canâ€™t be charged,â€ says Das, recognizing that cell phones are being used for more than logistical and rescue purposes inside the disaster. Cell phone and Internet companies areÂ offering services for free or at a discountÂ to support concerned families and stakeholders on a global level.
Das explains that relief workers are often the first to use Greenlightâ€™sÂ Sun KingÂ (pictured above) â€” a solar-powered lantern with a mobile phone charger â€” in disaster responses, because their main concerns are first-order needs, like food and water, then blankets and shelter. So, in order to give solar energy to locals in the area, the companyÂ partnered with World Vision to create aÂ Help Power Nepal crowd funding campaignÂ that usesÂ 100 percent of the funds raised to give solar lights to families in need.
â€œWeâ€™re putting our logistical muscle in the region to work to get these to relief workers at World Vision efficiently and quickly,â€ says Anish Thakkar, CEO of Greenlight. â€œAnd theyâ€™ll ensure donated lights get to families in need on the ground.â€ Greenlight Planet is partnered with U.N., MFI and other NGOs and governments around the world, ranking in the top 10Â percent of social businesses with a five-star rating from the Global Impact Investing Rating System (GIIRS) and two B Corp awards.
â€œWeâ€™re raising fundsÂ here. My hope is to raise $100K but we need to cross our $30K goal in the next week or so to make that happen.â€
Originally from Triple Pundit