by Allison Archambault
Earlier this month much of the EarthSpark team was in Les Anglais, the small town where EarthSpark’s clean energy (Enèji Pwòp) retail launched back in 2010 and now home to EarthSpark’s first microgrid. Two weeks after the grid’s soft launch, we joined customers, workers, town leaders and friends to formally inaugurate the grid and pause to celebrate progress.
Photos are up from the microgrid installation here.
The microgrid powered the DJ’s kompa music while Enèji Pwòp retailers raffled off efficient cook stoves and small-scale solar products. The following day, Enèji Pwòp retailers, newly supported by Kiva loans, sold out of some of their new stock to customers that had attended the fête.
The existence of this microgrid for these first few customers, the back-end business systems and the new Kiva loans that support these local energy entrepreneurs have been long-cultivated and very much supported by donor contributions.
In the coming year we plan to expand this grid from 14 to 400 customers and add significant solar energy generation. In parallel, we will expand the Enèji Pwòp retailer network from 75 to hundreds of small business owners to expand access to solar energy and efficient cookstoves throughout rural Haiti.