There are 60 existing households in Chatang, and there are future plans to build 20 additional homes for a total of 80. Three of these households are already running small shops out oftheir homes, and other families have expressed interest in starting small businesses out of their homes once they have access to reliable electricity through solar. Women in the community tend to do the daily water collection and gather wood for fuel, and men undertake much of the agricultural work.
Community-based solar micro-grids have great potential to contribute to development around the world. Yet today, few rural micro-grid models exist that are self-sustaining and meet the long-term needs of beneficiaries. In addition to clean, reliable lighting, a community micro-grid in Chatang has potential to create employment opportunities for local residents and catalyze the area as a small market center for travelers along the popular Goshaikunda trekking route. "Anchor loads," local enterprises that use power to provide a product or service to the community, have proven key to project success and sustainability. The solar micro-grid is designed with these objectives in mind, and will be installed in partnership with local solar company Gham Power.
Due to a severe landslide that cut through Chatang in mid-September 2018, the installation of the community micro-grid has been postponed from October until later in 2018 or early 2019. Fortunately, no injuries were reported in the event, but 11 homes were destroyed as a result of the landslide, and the entire community has temporarily re-located to a neighboring village until it is safe to return to Chatang and begin rebuilding what was lost. Once it is safe to do so, GRID staff and GRID partner, Gham Power, will complete the installation of the micro-grid in Chatang, which will not only provide energy for basic needs and essential infrastructure, but provide energy to power tools that will greatly bolster and accelrate rebuilding efforts following the recent landslide.
This project is sponsored by Northland Controls, and their support is making it possible to bring a micro-grid to the Chatang community. While Northland Controls employees will no longer be participating in the installation of the micro-grid itself as a result of the landslide, 23 Northland Controls employees will now be traveling to the Gorkha District of Nepal to bring solar to the Shree Dumre Secondary School of Palungtar. Learn more. Corporate sponsorships are critical in enabling GRID to bring the benefits of solar- financial savings, job opportunities, and a clean, renewable energy source- to families and communities that would not otherwise have access. Learn more about becoming a corporate sponsor for our international projects.