Klimaatakkoord: mijn (kleine) steentje

Afgelopen weekend sloten 195 landen een klimaatakkoord met als doel om de gemiddelde temperatuurstijging op aarde te beperken tot ver onder de twee graden. Landen moeten zelfs nastreven om het onder de anderhalve graad te houden. Een mooi moment. Zeker als Bas Eickhout, toch niet de meest kritiekloze volger van de onderhandelingen, spreekt van het einde van het tijdperk van fossiele energie.

CO2 compensatie

Om de totstandkoming van het verdrag te vieren en zelf een kleine bijdrage te leveren aan het verwezenlijken van de ambities uit het klimaatakkoord heb ik dit weekend de CO2 uitstoot van ons gasverbruik gecompenseerd door CO2-rechten uit de markt te laten nemen via Sandbag. Het gaat om ons gasverbruik in de periode november 2010 t/m december 2015. De bijbehorende CO2-emissie heb ik uitgerekend m.b.v. de zogenaamde well-to-wheel emissiefactoren van de website CO2emissiefactoren.nl. Daarmee heb ik meteen een kleine bijdrage geleverd aan een van de paradepaardjes van VNO-NCW: het repareren van het Europees emissiehandelsysteem.

Klimaatfinanciering

Een van de belangrijke onderdelen van het verdrag is klimaatfinanciering. Hoe zorgen we dat ontwikkelingslanden voldoende geld hebben voor investeringen in o.a. mitigatie (verlagen van de broeikasgassen) en adaptatie (dijken bouwen). Om daar een steentje aan bij te dragen heb ik een extra bedrag geïnvesteerd in offgrid zonne-energie via Sunfunder. Het project waarin ik heb geïnvesteerd is nog niet volledig gefinancierd, dus doe gerust mee.

Dat levert ook naast CO2-besparing ook meer mensen met veilig licht op. Volgens Sunfunder hebben mijn investeringen van de afgelopen 3 jaar al bijgedragen aan het vermijden van 3.250 ton CO2-uitstoot en impact op bijna 80.000 mensen. Of dat enkel op mijn deel slaat of op de totale vermeden CO2-uitstoot en totale impact op mensen van de projecten waarin ik heb geïnvesteerd weet ik niet.

Sunny summer news from Sunfunder

Always fun to receive some sunny news in the inbox. Although I’ve also got the first investment with troubles to repay timely. But that’s part of the game:

Hi Krispijn

The year is halfway over and we have made exciting progress all because of supporters like you. We have financed a total of $2.96 million in solar loans to 18 different solar companies. 28 out of 50 total project loans have been fully repaid. More than 300,000 people have benefited from reliable solar lighting and phone charging as a result. Thank you for being part of our journey in unlocking capital for emerging market solar and we look forward to making more progress in the second half of the year!

Here are your updates from June.

Light and Information Access for Sitapur District

May 20, 2015
Mera Gao Power builds, owns, and operates solar powered microgrids in Uttar Pradesh, India serving off-grid villages with high quality, dependable lighting and mobile phone charging services.
Aug 2014 – Interest repayment 1
Nov 2014 – Interest repayment 2
Feb 2015 – Interest repayment 3
May 2015 – Interest repayment 4
Aug 2015 – Interest repayment 5
Nov 2015 – Interest repayment 6
Feb 2016 – Interest repayment 7
May 2016 – Interest repayment 8
Aug 2016 – Interest repayment 9
Nov 2016 – Interest repayment 10
Feb 2017 – Interest repayment 11
May 2017 – Principal and interest repayment 12

Good news! Your received your fourth loan repayment for this project. Since only interest repayments are made on a quarterly basis for this project (and the principal of this project gets repaid at the end of the loan term), you only received Impact Points in your account this time around.

On the benefits that Mera Gao Power’s customers are experiencing, co-founder Sandeep Pandey says: “Families are simply happy to see the food that they eat after sun down, safely avoid snakes entering their homes, and no longer be exposed to the fire hazards of kerosene lamps. A family would easily spend Rs 160 a month for mobile charging and kerosene for lamps. We charge them Rs 100, and therefore solar is not a hard sell.”

Watch this TERI video of Mera Gao Power and its customers in Sitapur to see how your money is impacting lives of rural off-grid families.

Lend a Hand for Rafiki

March 15, 2015
Global Cycle Solutions is a social enterprise working to develop and disseminate affordable, quality technology for villagers around the world.
Jun 2014 – Repayment 1
Sep 2014 – Repayment 2
Dec 2014 – Repayment 3
Mar 2015 – Repayment 4

Congratulations! Your loan has been fully repaid. Here are some updates from Global Cycle Solutions’ team in Tanzania:

“We are still rolling a ball of marketing our solar lights to people especially those living in rural villages. Our Rafiki Team is doing a great job in reaching out to people in different villages to make sure people have access to our high quality solar lights. While introducing these lights, we inform customers on the remarkable benefits of using solar lights, including cost reduction compared to using kerosene lights, ability to productively perform duties at night, and keeping safe from harmful diseases caused by inhaling fumes from kerosene lamps and others. Moreover, we aim to win our customers trust and do so by providing a 2-year warranty period for every light, meaning that our customers can return defective light(s) and get working ones within 2 years from the date of purchase. Thanks to the loans from SunFunder community, we can keep this marketing activity up and continue to restock our inventory of solar lights to spread across Tanzania.”

Energizing Kayunga With Solar

March 6, 2015
SolarNow provides affordable, high quality solar home systems to off-grid households and businesses in Uganda. Their solar home systems range 50 to 500 watts and because they’re modular they can be upgraded over time.
Jun 2014 – Repayment 1
Sep 2014 – Repayment 2
Dec 2014 – Repayment 3
Mar 2015 – Repayment 4

Your loan has been fully repaid! Congratulations and thank you for supporting SunFunder in unlocking capital for solar energy in emerging markets. Thanks to this loan, SolarNow was able to sell 40 units of their 50W solar home kits on an 18-month payment plan. Each system powers 6 lights, cellphone charging, and radio, and is the first step of many households toward modern energy access. With the savings they’re able to accummulate by switching to solar, families will be able to continually upgrade their lifestyles to eventually enjoy appliances like a television and even refrigerator—all powered by solar energy and available through SolarNow.

Switch On Ntungamo

June 5, 2015
SolarNow provides affordable, high quality solar home systems to off-grid households and businesses in Uganda. Their solar home systems range 50 to 500 watts and because they’re modular they can be upgraded over time.
Sep 2014 – Repayment 1
Dec 2014 – Repayment 2
Mar 2015 – Repayment 3
Jun 2015 – Repayment 4
Sep 2015 – Repayment 5
Dec 2015 – Repayment 6

Good news! Your received your third loan repayment for this project. Since only interest repayments are made on a quarterly basis for this project (and the principal of this project gets repaid at the end of the loan term), you only received Impact Points in your account this time around.

Ms. Najjemba is SolarNow customer that purchased a solar home system on payment plan in April and was recently visited by a SolarNow staff. She runs a small shop in a remote trading centre containing 7 brick houses while her husband is in the field working the banana (Matoke) and onion crops. She offers small packages of washing powder, a handful of fresh nuts, pens and notebooks for the school children from the school opposite the trading centre, and provides soda bottles for the refreshment seekers. Her shop is now open for longer hours due to the solar lights. This has increased the services being provided to the community, who now gather around the shop and chat in the evenings. Ms. Najjemba told the SolarNow staff, “We would like to expand our shop to the building next door. A barbershop on solar is our dream.

March 6, 2015
SolarNow provides affordable, high quality solar home systems to off-grid households and businesses in Uganda. Their solar home systems range 50 to 500 watts and because they’re modular they can be upgraded over time.
Sep 2014 – Repayment 1
Dec 2014 – Repayment 2
Mar 2015 – Repayment 3
Jun 2015 – Repayment 4
Sep 2015 – Repayment 5
Dec 2015 – Repayment 6

Good news! Your received your third loan repayment for this project. Since the principal of this project gets repaid at the end of the loan term, you only received Impact Points in your account from this repayment.

Your loan helps SolarNow extend 18-month payment plans to their customers that can’t afford to pay for a 50W solar home system upfront. As you can see from the photo, they’ve got quite the sales team that is traveling throughout Uganda to find new customers and offer them the affordable payment plan!

Easy Power with ReadyPay

June 30, 2015
Fenix International is a renewable energy company delivering their manufactured ReadySet solar home systems to people who live without power in emerging markets.
Oct 2014 – Repayment 1
Jan 2015 – Repayment 2
Apr 2015 – Repayment 3
Jul 2015 – Repayment 4
Oct 2015 – Repayment 5
Jan 2016 – Repayment 6

Good news! The fourth out of six scheduled repayments for this project is complete.

March 31, 2015
Fenix International is a renewable energy company delivering their manufactured ReadySet solar home systems to people who live without power in emerging markets.
Oct 2014 – Repayment 1
Jan 2015 – Repayment 2
Apr 2015 – Repayment 3
Jul 2015 – Repayment 4
Oct 2015 – Repayment 5
Jan 2016 – Repayment 6

Good news! The third out of six scheduled repayments for this project is complete.

Solar for Clean Homes

June 2, 2015
Boma Safi is a woman-led social enterprise that innovates in the distribution of life improving and poverty solving goods – including clean cook stoves and solar PV appliances – to the Bottom of Pyramid (BoP), typically underserved by conventional trading and financial systems.
        Mar 2015 – Repayment 1
DELAYED May 2015 – Repayment 2
DELAYED Jul 2015 – Repayment 3
Sep 2015 – Repayment 4

Although it deals a lot with the sun, the emerging market solar business is not always all bright and sunny. Boma Safi has been experiencing some operational difficulties in Kenya and has contacted SunFunder in advance of their second repayment to inform us that they would be late in making their second loan repayment. Our Tanzania-based team have since been in close touch with Boma Safi’s team, working through their financials and projected cash flows, to determine their ability to repay and restructuring their loan repayment schedule appropriately. It is unlikely that Boma Safi will be able to repay all of their loans by September, but we are actively looking for solutions to have the majority of the principal paid back by the end of 2015.

March 26, 2015
Boma Safi is a woman-led social enterprise that innovates in the distribution of life improving and poverty solving goods – including clean cook stoves and solar PV appliances – to the Bottom of Pyramid (BoP), typically underserved by conventional trading and financial systems.
Mar 2015 – Repayment 1
May 2015 – Repayment 2
Jul 2015 – Repayment 3
Sep 2015 – Repayment 4

Good news! Despite a slight delay, the repayment for your loan has been fully paid.

Improve Children’s Studies with Solar

April 30, 2015
SunnyMoney is a social enterprise that sells quality solar lights in Malawi, Zambia, Kenya and Tanzania, reducing reliance on poor quality fuels such as kerosene and disposable, short-life batteries.
Apr 2015 – Repayment 1
Jul 2015 – Repayment 2
Oct 2015 – Repayment 3
Jan 2016 – Repayment 4

This is to inform you (belatedly) that your first repayment for this project has been made. You may have noticed the credit in your SunFunder account. We fully expect the second repayment to be made on time this month by SunnyMoney and share more exciting stories from the ground in the next email update.

Light Up Homes with Little Sun

June 30, 2015
Alight Zimbabwe Energy provides safe, clean, sustainable, and reliable energy to the disadvantaged communities of Zimbabwe. Launched in 2012, the company also focuses on employment creation for Zimbabwe’s youth by providing young people the opportunity to earn a living through selling solar lighting products.

Sunfunder jaaroverzicht 2014

Sinds begin 2013 investeren we een klein bedrag in offgrid solar projecten via Sunfunder. Tot nu toe hebben we aan 14 projecten deelgenomen, waarvan er 6 volledig zijn terugebetaald. De andere projecten lopen nog. Wat we terug ontvangen investeren we automatisch weer in nieuwe projecten. Doordat de looptijd van de leningen vaak een jaar is hebben we met onze investering van ongeveer $250 inmiddels bijna twee keer zo veel uitgeleend.

Ontwikkelingen bij Sunfunder

Halverwege het jaar heeft Sunfunder ervoor gekozen om investeerders niet meer te laten kiezen in welk project ze willen investeren. In plaats daarvan gaat geld nu naar ‘the next project’. Zodra het gewenste bedrag voor 100% is opgehaald wordt gekeken welke partner van Sunfunder een geschikt project heeft voor de investering. Dit is gedaan omdat partners financiering via Sunfunder te lang vonden duren. Het nadeel is wel dat je niet meer kunt zien waar je in investeert.

Dat wordt naar mijn mening ruimschoots goed gemaakt doordat het Sunfunder afgelopen jaar verschillende keren is gelukt om crowdfunding te gebruiken als middel voor het aantrekken van geld van grote investeerders voor soortgelijke projecten via hun Solar Empowerment Fund.

Een andere belangrijke ontwikkeling is dat Sunfunder nog steeds groeit en ook kapitaal weet aan te trekken van grote namen, zoals Khosla Impact, Schneider Electric, en Better Ventures. Meer hierover kan je lezen op hun blog.

Account Summary

Invested total $488.53
Projects funded 14
Repayment received $250.51
Repayment pending $238.02
Impact points earned -94
People impacted 56276
Account balance $0

Rent-to-Own a Solar Light

December 17, 2014

smallsolutions is a Uganda-based social enterprise providing renewable energy and human development solutions at the grassroots level in East Africa.
Mar 2014 – Repayment 1
Jun 2014 – Repayment 2
Sep 2014 – Repayment 3
Dec 2014 – Repayment 4

Congrats, your loan has been fully repaid! We and the team at smallsolutions would like to thank everyone who supported this project to benefit local farmers in Uganda.

Solar for 450 Teachers

December 22, 2014

Global Cycle Solutions is a social enterprise working to develop and disseminate affordable, quality technology for villagers around the world.
Apr 2014 – Repayment 1
Jul 2014 – Repayment 2
Sep 2014 – Repayment 3
Dec 2014 – Repayment 4

Woohoo! This project is fully repayed 🙂 This means that more teachers near Arusha, Tanzania are benefiting from the simple credit plan that Global Cycle Solutions offers when they purchase solar lights. Here are some updates from the team:

“Our team is doing a great job in reaching out to people in different villages to make sure people have access to our high quality solar lights. While introducing these lights, we inform customers on the remarkable benefits of using our solar lights including cost reduction compared to using kerosene lights, ability to productively perform duties at night and keeping safe from harmful diseases caused by inhaling fumes from kerosene lamps and others. The kids are happy with the brightness of our lights before their eyes, but what if they accidentally drop the light? If this happens there is no need to worry because our lights do not break easily even when dropped on a concrete floor. These are only few advantages people get on a daily basis by using our solar lights. We thank you for your support and we look forward to expand the distribution of our solar lights throughout all the villages in Tanzania and outside.”

Lend a Hand for Rafiki

December 22, 2014

Global Cycle Solutions is a social enterprise working to develop and disseminate affordable, quality technology for villagers around the world.
Jun 2014 – Repayment 1
Sep 2014 – Repayment 2
Dec 2014 – Repayment 3
Mar 2015 – Repayment 4

Energizing Kayunga With Solar

December 1, 2014

SolarNow provides affordable, high quality solar home systems to off-grid households and businesses in Uganda. Their solar home systems range 50 to 500 watts and because they’re modular they can be upgraded over time.
Jun 2014 – Repayment 1
Sep 2014 – Repayment 2
Dec 2014 – Repayment 3
Mar 2015 – Repayment 4

Switch On Ntungamo

December 1, 2014

SolarNow provides affordable, high quality solar home systems to off-grid households and businesses in Uganda. Their solar home systems range 50 to 500 watts and because they’re modular they can be upgraded over time.
Sep 2014 – Repayment 1
Dec 2014 – Repayment 2
Mar 2015 – Repayment 3
Jun 2015 – Repayment 4
Sep 2015 – Repayment 5
Dec 2015 – Repayment 6

The battle for the bottom of the energy market

sunfunder_installationThe rise of sustainable energy puts the profitability of both the coal and gas industry in Europe, the US, and Australia under growing pressure. Oil and coal companies are refocusing on emerging markets, just like the tobacco industry did. Both Peabody Energy Inc. (one of the largest US coal companies) and ExxonMobil recently declared that fossil fuels are necessary to provide affordable energy to the poor.The problem for oil, gas, and coal companies is that market developments aren’t helping. A recent study by Kepler Chevreux shows that fossil fuel companies are about to loose massive amounts of money, even under the business as usual scenario—that is if there are no climate change policies in place—as estimated by the International Energy Agency (IEA). The paradox cited in the study by Kepler Chevreux is that those losses increase with higher market prices for fossil fuels, meaning higher oil prices will trigger bigger losses.The reason for that paradox is the falling prices of renewable energy. They have fallen so drastically to let the geenie out of the bottle. In growing parts of the world, electricity from solar and wind, combined with micro-grids if wanted, is becoming cheaper than electricity from traditional utilities powered by large scale coal, gas, or oil power plants with a huge grid network.

Fossil fuel companies and traditional utilities are faced with an additional challenge: while the cost of wind, solar, and energy storage continues to fall,  the cost of coal, oil and gas continues to rise. The latter is due to a combination of an increasing amount of environmental and health regulations being enacted by governments worldwide as well as the depletion of easily recoverable oil, gas, and coal reserves.

Those problems are not unique to companies in countries that are actively engaged in sustainable energy, like Germany. Similar problems also arise in Australia, a country whose current government has little affinity with climate change or sustainable energy; problems with Australia’s extended grids are becoming so big that one of their utilities recently set a California-style energy storage target for 2020.

Developments at the bottom of the energy market

IMG_6454At the true bottom of the energy market in Africa, South-America and Asia, large areas are not yet connected to the grid. With the falling cost of sustainable energy and energy storage, it is becoming less likely that those areas will ever be connected to a traditional grid with large central power stations. It is more likely that those areas will leap-frog the central grid by implementing off-grid solutions and micro-grids. In The Netherlands, such solutions are mainly known because of WakaWaka, a Dutch company that raised over €300,000 through crowdfunding on Symbid and OnePlanetCrowd in 2012 and 2013. In the US, all things are handled a slice bigger and off-grid solutions company D.Light recently raised $11 million in series C funding to finance its further growth.

logo_sunfunderThe US also has a dedicated solar investment platform for off-grid solar called SunFunder. Since starting 2 years ago, SunFunder has raised over $600,000 for 21 projects through crowdfunding as well as private investments from accredited and institutional investors.

In my opinion, SunFunder is interesting for three reasons. First, they look further than solar lights and phone chargers. They also look at larger scale solar such as solar home systems and micro-grids. Their current project Switch On Ntungamo in Uganda is a good example. Second, they leverage crowdfunding to make off-grid solar projects more attractive for larger private investors. They are going ahead with this two-tiered approach with the ultimate goal of proving that off-grid solar is bankable. To date the repayment rate of SunFunder’s projects is 100%.

Impact_land_a_hand_for_Rafiki-500x259

Third, an important reason that makes SunFunder interesting is that they show how much a family can save by switching from fossil fuels to solar energy (example above). Traditionally many families in Africa and India use kerosene lighting, which is bad for their health because its toxic fumes make for poor indoor air quality and it is dangerous (it can easily be accidentally knocked over or spilled, causing fire). Kerosene lamps also cost money every month because it needs to be refueled, while a solar light only costs money at the time of buying and does not cost money to refuel because sunshine is free. The time it takes for solar lights to repay for itself is very short, often less than a year. Meanwhile, the savings from solar lights can add up to 15% of a family’s annual household income and are continuously earned for the lifespan of the product, ranging from 5-10 years depending on the battery.

This provides an additional problem for the fossil fuel industry, as Africa is often a market for low-quality products. High quality kerosene, for example, is sold to major airlines, while low quality kerosene is sold to Africa for lighting. Thus, each quality solar light that is sold in Africa eats into the market of oil companies and each micro-grid installation takes away potential markets for traditional, coal powered grids. So I do wonder if the current “fossil fuels are necessary” strategy of oil and coal companies for the bottom of the pyramid will work.

This article was published in Dutch on Sargasso and reproduced with the author’s permission. His article has been translated to English with the help of SunFunder staff.

Disclosure: I’ve participated in WakaWaka’s crowdfunding campaign and I’m an active crow investor on sunfunder.com.

De wereldwijde strijd om de onderkant van de energiemarkt

sunfunder_installationDe winstgevendheid van energiecentrales op kolen en gas in Europa, de VS en Australië staat in toenemende mate onder druk door de opkomst van hernieuwbare energie. Net als de tabaksindustrie verleggen mijnbouw- en oliebedrijven hun focus naar ontwikkelingslanden. Zowel Peabody Energy Inc. (een van de grootste kolenbedrijven van de  VS) als Exxon Mobile verklaarde recent dat fossiele energiebronnen belangrijk zijn voor een betaalbare energievoorziening voor de armen.

Het enige probleem voor bedrijven in olie, kolen en gas is dat de marktontwikkeling ze niet meezit. Een recente studie van Kepler Chevreux laat zien dat deze bedrijven zelfs onder het business as usual-scenario van het Internationaal Energie Agentschap, dat wil zeggen zonder klimaatbeleid, forse verliezen kunnen verwachten. Paradoxaal genoeg worden die verliezen alleen maar hoger als de prijs van fossiele brandstoffen stijgt. Dus hoe hoger de olieprijs, hoe hoger het verlies volgens Kepler Chevreux wordt.

De oorzaak daarvan heeft alles te maken met de opkomst van duurzame energiebronnen. De geest is uit de fles en in een toenemend aantal gebieden in de wereld is elektriciteit van zon- en wind, eventueel aangevuld met een micro-grid, goedkoper dan het traditionele elektriciteitsmodel van grote kolen-, gas- en oliecentrales met een groot elektriciteitsnetwerk. Met als bijkomende uitdaging: de kostprijs van zon- en windenergie daalt, terwijl de kostprijs van kolen, olie en gas stijgt door een combinatie van regelgeving en het opraken van makkelijk winbare voorraden.

De problemen ontstaan niet alleen in landen die duurzame energie goed gezind zijn, zoals Duitsland. Ook in Australië, waar de huidige regering weinig opheeft met klimaatbeleid of duurzame energie, beginnen energiebedrijven het te voelen. Zo zeer zelfs dat een van de netwerkbeheerders bezig is naar een omslag naar energieopslag in plats van netwerkuitbreiding.

Ontwikkelingen  aan de onderkant van de energiemarkt

Aan de echte onderkant van de markt, in Afrika, Zuid-Amerika en Azië, zijn grote gebieden nog niet aangesloten op elektriciteitsnetwerken. Met de dalende kosten van duurzame energie en energieopslag is het de vraag of deze gebieden ooit aangesloten gaan worden op een centraal elektriciteitsnetwerk. Of dat deze gebieden gebruik  gaan maken van offgrid oplossingen en mini-grids. In Nederland zijn dergelijke oplossingen vooral bekend vanWakaWaka, dat in 2012 en 2013 via crowdfundingacties op Symbid enOnePlanetCrowd ruim €300.000 ophaalde. In de VS pakken ze het nog een maatje groter aan en haalde D.Light recent $11 miljoen op aan durfkapitaal om de verdere groei te financieren.

logo_sunfunderAmerika kent met Sunfunder zelfs een crowdfunding platform dat zich specifiek richt op het financieren van offgrid zonne-energie. Sinds hun start 2 jaar geleden hebben ze ruim $600.000 opgehaald voor 21 projecten via crowdfunding en private investeerders.

Sunfunder is naar mijn mening om drie redenen interessant: ten eerste kijken ze verder dan lampen en telefoonopladers op zonne-energie, ze kijken ook steeds vaker naar micro-grids. Bijvoorbeeld bij hun huidige project Switch On Ntungamo. Ten tweede gebruiken ze crowdfunding om offgrid solar toegang te geven tot financiering door grote private investeerders en uiteindelijk ook banken. Tot nu toe is 100% van de leningen terugbetaald.

Impact_land_a_hand_for_Rafiki-500x259
Impact berekening offgrid solar project in Tanzania.

Een derde belangrijke reden dat Sunfunder interessant is is omdat ze laten zien hoeveel een familie kan besparen door over te schakelen van fossiele energie op zonne-energie. Traditioneel gebruiken veel families en Afrika en India kerosene voor verlichting. Dat is slecht voor hun gezondheid (luchtkwaliteit binnenshuis) en gevaarlijk (brand). Bovendien kost kerosine iedere maand geld, terwijl een zonne-lamp enkel een start investering vergt. Daarna is de elektriciteit gratis. De terugverdientijden zijn daarbij erg kort. Vaak minder dan een jaar, terwijl de besparing op kan lopen tot 15% van het huishoudinkomen.

IMG_6454Een bijkomend probleem voor de olie-industrie is dat de Afrikaanse markt een afzetmarkt vormt voor kwalitatief laagwaardige producten. Hoogwaardige kerosine gaat naar de luchtvaart, laagwaardige naar Afrika voor verlichting. Iedere verkochte zonne-lamp vreet dus ook aan de afzetmarkt van de olie-industrie. Ieder micro-grid vreet aan de potentiële markt voor centrale energieopwekking met grote elektriciteitsnetwerken. Ik vraag me dan ook af of een bottom of the pyramid strategie daadwerkelijk gaat werken voor de olie- en kolenindustrie.

Disclosure: Ik heb zelf deelgenomen aan de crowdfunding acties van WakaWaka en investeer in offgrid solar via Sunfunder.

Dit artikel is eerder gepubliceerd op Sargasso en Oneworld.

Fotocredits: Sunfunder.

Update on my Sunfunder projects (January 2014)

1200 More Solar Lights in Copperbelt

January 15, 2014
SunnyMoney is a social enterprise that sells quality solar lights in Malawi, Zambia, Kenya and Tanzania, reducing reliance on poor quality fuels such as kerosene and disposable, short-life batteries.
Jul 2013 – Repayment 1
Oct 2013 – Repayment 2
Jan 2014 – Repayment 3
Apr 2014 – Repayment 4

Going good, I’ve just been repaid on my loan for this SunnyMoney project for the third time. I’m now only one repayment away from being fully repaid! I’ve paid it forward and grown my impact by reinvesting your repaid funds into another project that is not yet fully funded. Thanks for supporting off-grid solar!

The repayment means that demand for solar in the area is still high and that students and teachers are buying solar lights across Copperbelt district. As a result, they are experiencing life without kerosene, which is healthier and more economical.

Propel Zamsolar Solar Scouts

January 14, 2014
Zamsolar is a social enterprise that empowers a network of sales agents in rural villages and delivers solar products and other cost-saving and income-generating products to the 10 million Zambians who have no electricity.
Oct 2013 – Repayment 1
Jan 2014 – Repayment 2
Apr 2014 – Repayment 3
Jul 2014 – Repayment 4

Good news! I received my second repayment on my loan for this Zamsolar project. I’ve reinvested the rapayment in other solar projects on Sunfunder.

The Solar Scout program has grown tremendously since the first recruits joined in January of 2013. A year later, the number of Solar Scouts has grown to 450; your loan helped 50 of them start on the right track. In the last several months of 2013 Zamsolar tried a different approach to managing their Solar Scouts. Instead of providing the scouts with products on consignment to sell, the scouts buy a product sample at a discounted price to use while promoting the product to potential customers. After submitting orders, the scouts will then receive products from a Zamsolar manager and are responsible for delivering them to their customers. Since buying a product sample is a commitment in itself, this new approach motivates scouts to be proactive with selling solar lights. As a result, more Solar Scouts are regularly selling products every month, and now a Solar Scout sells 3 to 4 products every month on average, earning commission totaling between $18-$24. With this extra income, Solar Scouts are able to put away some money for saving or better support their families.

Power Homes and Businesses in Kayunga

December 30, 2013
SolarNow provides affordable, high quality solar home systems to off-grid households and businesses in Uganda. Their solar home systems range 50 to 500 watts and because they’re modular they can be upgraded over time.

250 other people and I are making steady progress in this project’s funding. The project is now only $8,000 away from being fully funded, but we could use your help to top it off. So help out and invest, so this project will get fully funded and more people can benefit from solar.

Invest Now

Meer zonnige investeringen via SunFunder

Deze week heb ik weer eens een kijkje genomen bij mijn SunFunder-account. Tot mijn blijde verrassing waren er weer een aantal aflossingen binnen op de eerder geïnvesteerde bedragen. Daarmee is de eerste lening voor bijna 50% terugbetaald, drie andere leningen zijn voor een kwart terugbetaald.

Uiteraard heb ik het geld meteen weer opnieuw geïnvesteerd in zonne-energie voor Afrika. Ik heb geld gestoken in 2 nieuwe projecten. Een volledig overzicht van de projecten waarin ik nu geïnvesteerd heb vind je in de tabel hieronder. Drie projecten zijn nog niet actief, omdat ze nog niet volledig gefinancierd zijn. Dus heb je nog wat geld te investeren in deze donkere, maar feestelijke dagen, overweeg dan om wat duurzaam licht naar Afrika te brengen.

Project Status % repaid # of people
with solar
Energy cost
savings
CO2
avoided (kg)
1200 More Solar Lights in Copperbelt Active 49.4% 6,776 $99,381 0
Propel Zamsolar Solar Scouts Active 24.5% 2,02 $25 0
ReadySet, Charge! Active 24.5% 375 $9,000 3,075
Solar for 4,500 Students Active 24.6% 22,5 $87,750 229,5
Power Homes and Businesses in Kayunga Pending 0.0% 825 $0 0
Rent-to-Own a Solar Light Pending 0.0% 5,4 $0 0
Solar for 450 Teachers Pending 0.0% 1,8 $0 0

 

Congratulations! You’ve just invested in the project Solar for 450 Teachers. Because of you, 1800 people are getting closer to benefiting from clean, affordable solar energy. That’s quite an impact. Thank you!

To track your project investments and impact, please visit your Stats page.

Here’s a summary of your investment:

Project: Solar for 450 Teachers
Investment: $10.00

If you have any questions or feedback for us, please send us a note at connect@sunfunder.com. We also appreciate your help in spreading the word about this project to your friends. That way, we can issue out the complete loan and our partner will be able to get this project off the ground sooner rather than later!