Friday, June 21, 2013

SolarAid wins global green energy award

London, 20 June 2013 | +44 781 628 0106
SolarAid – a charity bringing clean light to rural East Africa – has won a coveted Ashden Award
The charity SolarAid, which sells solar-powered lanterns to families living without grid power in Tanzania and elsewhere in East Africa, has been announced today (20 June) as winner of the 2013 Ashden International Gold Award, the world’s most prestigious green energy prize.

SolarAid received the prize – worth £40,000 – at a ceremony at the Royal Geographical Society, London. The award was presented by Ashden Founder Director Sarah Butler-Sloss.

With the audacious goal of eliminating the kerosene lamp from Africa by 2020, SolarAid’s sales teams work with schools in rural areas to promote good quality, affordable solar-powered lights to families. With over 500,000 lamps sold since 2010, the charity is now the largest distributor of solar lights in Africa and has a 25% market share.
The immediate benefits are immeasurable: children are able to study in the evening, polluting and dangerous kerosene is avoided, and families save money. By using competitive procurement, SolarAid says it is helping raise standards across the industry.
Pippa Palmer, Managing Director of SolarAid said:
Being an Ashden winner endorses our revolutionary concept – addressing the root cause of poverty by building a viable market for quality solar lamps. Investing in solar means rural families no longer spend 20 per cent of subsistence income on toxic kerosene – freeing money for better food, education and earning opportunities. Life changing!“
Sarah Butler-Sloss said:
“SolarAid has taken a huge step forward in eradicating the kerosene lamp from Africa by deliberately targeting the hardest places to reach with solar lighting – the very places where people are most in need. By working with schools to get study lanterns to families it is helping give a whole generation of African schoolchildren the chance of a better future.”
SolarAid is one of four enterprises working in Africa to win an International Ashden Award. The others are WWF-DRC, Azuri Technologies and Impact Carbon.
The Ashden Awards were founded in 2001 to encourage the greater use of sustainable energy to reduce poverty and tackle climate change.
Media contacts
Ashden: Luke Malcher | +44 (0) 207 410 7068 |
Media materials available
Photos and broadcast quality footage of the winners’ works and clips from the awards ceremony are available on request.
From Friday 21 June:Download detailed information, films, and photographs of
Download photos of the Award ceremony:
Notes to editors
1.    The Ashden Awards were set up in 2001 to champion practical, local energy solutions that cut carbon, protect the environment, reduce poverty and improve people’s lives. Since then we have rewarded and supported more than 140 winners across the UK and the developing world. Ashden’s Patron is HRH The Prince of Wales. Find out more at 
2.    This year three international winners and a Gold Award winner were awarded a total of £100,000 in prize money to help them scale up their work.
3.    Since 2001, Ashden award winners have improved the lives of 33 million people worldwide, and are now saving over 4 million tonnes of CO2 every year.
4.    Some 1.4 billion people around the world lack access to modern energy, while 3 billion rely on ‘traditional biomass’ and coal as their main fuel sources.
5.    Winners of the 2013 International Ashden Award will receive £20,000 to £40,000 in prize money as well as business support, access to investors and a global platform to build their profile.

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