Solar Technology in Africa
How Akon Managed To Inspire A Continent
By: David McDonald
Akon has taken a break from his music career to fulfill a lifelong dream: give back to the people of Africa.
He began his charity, ‘Akon Lighting Africa’ in 2014, and has since been able to provide over 600 million Africans with electricity. His organization has accomplished this amazing feat by installing solar panels in rural communities across Africa. These solar panels are on rooftops and street posts and are bringing in a great amount of electricity for Africans living in these rural neighbourhoods.
This whole story is very inspiring, and it shows Akon’s brilliance, along with his passionate entrepreneurialism.
With the rise of solar technology upon us, Akon realized the huge potential that Africa has in terms of harvesting this lucrative technology. Africa averages 320 days of sunlight per year, that’s nearly 100 days more per year than New York City, where solar panels are still highly profitable.
With this much sunlight exposure, it makes complete sense to install continent wide solar panels in order to harvest this free energy. Considering that Africa has arguably the worst electric power infrastructure in the world with the lowest scores in power generation, consumption and security of supply, the move to make solar energy in the continent a primary energy source is extremely helpful to everyone who lives in the continent.
The effects of Akon’s charity are immensely positive. Here are a few:
Rural areas can now allow businesses to be open throughout the night.
Villages are safer with lights in the streets.
Children can study at night time.
Living conditions will improve if homes are able to be lit at night.
People will no longer have to walk miles in order to charge their electronics.
Thousands of jobs will be created due to the demand to build solar towers, and maintain them.
The economy will benefit due to the profitability of solar panels.
To add on that last point, imagine if every home in Africa had a small solar panel on it. That would mean every home in Africa would be making a profit just from harvesting the sun’s energy.
Akon’s charity will improve the quality of life throughout Africa, which is an amazing accomplishment. The entrepreneur shows no signs of slowing down, as he has stated how, “There are still 600 million Africans without electricity” and he will not stop until they have received help.
Society needs more people like Akon. People who dedicate their lives to something much larger than themselves. People who spend time and resources in the hopes of creating a better world for someone else. People like Akon.
Check out the organization’s website where they have a great video on how they have helped Africa. http://akonlightingafrica.com/