That’s more than 1 IN 3 PEOPLE
Many people must spend hours every day collecting firewood or animal waste to fuel their stoves, in addition to fetching and carrying clean water, and often walking long distances in the process. That's not to mention the time it takes to actually prepare the meal — grinding and preparing grains and produce and building fires.
New York State consumes as much energy as the entire population of Sub-Saharan Africa (excluding South Africa).
It’s not just about light bulbs and television. Energy is about:
291+ MILLION primary school students attend schools without electricity
1 IN 2 students in developing countries
Advantages of electricity:
Children can spend less time on domestic chores, and more time in school instead
The ability to study after dark
Access to computers, television, and radio
4.3 MILLION DEATHS in 2012 were linked to indoor air pollution in homes using biomass, wood, and coal stoves
In Sri Lankan households without electricity, infant mortality is more than
as high compared to homes with electricity
Access to modern energy often replaces harmful biomass-burning stoves, but that’s not its only health benefit. It has the potential to improve public health on a broad scale. TV and radio spread important health information. Meanwhile, clinics can stay open longer and offer better care — including vaccines that could save the lives of countless children and adults. These vaccines often require refrigeration.
Access to modern energy creates opportunities, in the form of extra time, for women and girls to attend school and pursue work and goals outside of the home. Electrification results in 1-4 hours saved every day in tasks often performed by women, including cooking, food processing, water collection, and fuel collection.
Energy creates opportunities for people to start up a business, earn a living, and feed their families. It allows businesses to produce more products, and sell those products outside their immediate area. These businesses can mean a huge economic boost: electrified industries in rural Bangladesh create 11X more employment on average than non-electrified industries.
The majority of people without electricity at home also lack access to street lighting. By 2020, about 90% of road traffic deaths around the world will occur in low- and middle-income countries, with higher risk of accidents happening at night. Street lighting can help reduce these numbers.
Meanwhile, street lighting offers the chance for economic expansion, since businesses can sell their wares at night. Women are more likely to frequent these businesses, since it will be safer for them to leave their homes after dark.
UNDP supports more than 100 developing countries in energy-related projects. Here are just some of the impacts of UNDP-supported projects around the globe.
From 2009 to 2011, the Rural Energy Development Programme connected 50,000+ households to micro-hydropower installations, and helped almost 1 million Nepalese access electricity from renewable energy sources. For each micro-hydro system, 40 new businesses are created.
Over 10 years, the percentage of the population with electricity access increased from less than 50% to about 70%. Micro-enterprises are emerging as local community members, including women, discover new business opportunities and increase their incomes.
More than 3.5 million rural people are benefitting from expanded energy services in 12 Sub-Saharan countries. Electricity and infrastructure help businesses expand and create job opportunities. A 2011 study found 27,900+ jobs were created in Mali alone.
The government has committed to increasing the share of renewable energy to up to 20% of national consumption by 2020. Much of this energy can come from biomass fuel made from carbon-neutral agricultural waste, which doesn’t contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.
80% of Botswana’s rural population uses firewood. Solar-powered heating systems and lighting appliances were introduced in some 88 villages off the country's main electricity grid, saving women and girls valuable time on firewood collection, and enabling children to spend more time in school.Learn More
53,000 indigenous people in Brazil can lead healthier lives due to the introduction of high-efficiency eco-stoves. These stoves reduce respiratory problems, and use firewood more efficiently, producing less greenhouse gas as a result.Learn More
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