Thousands of off-grid solar systems installed in developing countries stop working well before their intended lifespan, disrupting electricity access and causing equipment to sit unused in a “solar graveyard.” We hosted a panel discussion with global energy access experts to learn why this happens and what can be done to ensure that international off-grid solar projects have the maximum positive impact on the communities they are designed to serve. Moderated by Jenean Smith, GRID Alternatives' Director of International Programs. Panelists were:
Mathias Craig, Executive Director, blueEnergy, Nicaragua
Mathias Craig co-founded blueEnergy in 2003 and serves as Executive Director. He holds a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UC Berkeley and an MS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from MIT. He enjoys juggling English, French, and Spanish.
Erica Mackey, Co-founder, Off Grid Electric, Tanzania
Erica Mackey is the co-founder and previous COO of Off.Grid:Electric Ltd, the world’s first massively scalable off-grid electric company. It exists to provide affordable and reliable energy to communities that currently lack such power.
Anjal Niraula, General Manager, Gham Power, Nepal
Anjal is an off-grid solar expert at Gham Power, where he oversees company's R&D and product strategy - including business development, design and engineering. The focus is on developing microgrids along with productive end use loads to ensure that the microgrids are self-sustainable, with the aim of achieving decent return for a private investor over 10 years.