Three elements are required to have an impact in development work. The program must be sustainable, replicable and scalable. Over time Sirona is proving that our Ti Soley Program is sustainable both environmentally and economically. When 100 homes pay for electricity access from our solar systems the cost per home is low enough for homes to improve their economics by paying less for energy than they had paid for inferior sources of energy (kerosene, batteries, cell phone charging, candles, etc.). Also, when 100 homes are paying a small fee each month the capital cost of the station is paid off in under five years with a return that is acceptable to impact investors. By creating local businesses we are we are improving both household and village economics. We are keeping the money that flows into the kerosene market circulating in impoverished communities instead.
Next, our program is replicable. We have replicated our success throughout Haiti and we are currently engaged in a small program in Ghana as well as looking at opportunities in Kenya and Uganda. The program can be replicated in any impoverished off-grid community where the current median cost of household energy is at least $10 per month. In Haiti the median cost that homes are currently paying is $10.50 and rising due to local inflation.
Finally, impact requires scalability. In the past week we deployed electricity access for 600 homes in four days. With a pickup and a team of two, two stations can be deployed in a day. If the household size is 5 people per home, we reach 1,000 people per day. The program can scale as rapidly as financing is available and its impact is instant.
We are proving, by delivering 1.5 tons of equipment to a tiny island in Haiti, and to its mountaintops, that our program can be deployed anywhere that energy poverty persists. We will continue to demonstrate the positive impacts of our work and look forward to expanding throughout and beyond Haiti in the coming year.
The recent deployment was part of the UN Environmental Program’s Cote de Sud Initiative funded by the Government of Norway. The opportunity to work with this consortium has been a privilege.