PEG Africa is a pioneering pay-as-you-go (PAYG) solar company focused on West Africa. Co-founder and CEO Hugh Whalan stopped by PV Tech to discuss why this business model is filling gaps in Africa's off-grid solar market, and how it has potential to evolve into meeting needs of consumers beyond electricity access.
Nigeria is one of the most economically sound countries on the continent. Trailblazing in many ways including finance, infrastructure and employment, the country has up until very recently been a laggard when it comes to renewable energy. However, a newly-installed government is ensuring priorities are changing and frameworks are being put in place to exploit Nigeria’s clean energy prowess and close the gap between supply and demand. Segun Adaju, president of the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria, discussed with PV Tech how the country is getting to grips with clean energy.
San Francisco-based SunFunder is a solar finance business with a mission to unlock capital for solar energy in emerging markets. It primarily aggregates investment capital through its beyond-the-grid and Solar Empowerment funds, thereby giving accredited investors the opportunity to invest in their on-grid and off-grid solar portfolio. Andrea Griffin, SunFunder’s vice president of global business development, stopped by PV Tech to discuss investment, currency risk and energy storage in West Africa.
Community solar is emerging as an auspicious new source of demand in the US, opening up access to solar among previously excluded groups. Ethical Electric, a Washington-based renewable energy company providing 100% clean electricity to retail customers, recently launched a community solar division under the new name of CleanChoice Energy to get on board with the disruption. Managing director Laura Pagliarulo and chief impact officer Richard Graves discussed with PV Tech the company’s plans, its recent SunShot Initiative award, and how community solar is set to become ‘retail 2.0’.
It’s the globe’s second largest continent, home to the some of the world’s fastest growing economies, and it has supplied precious resources to nations for hundreds of years - so why do today’s solar PV businesses find it so difficult to succeed in Africa? PV Tech spoke with Jon Sarpong, president of PV developer and consultancy Avior Global, about the challenges and opportunities for PV companies eyeing up the African market.
Despite recent uncertainty over how energy auctions involving utility-scale solar will progress in Brazil, there are signs that the distributed generation (DG) segment could be one to watch out for. In the same week that Brazilian minister of mines and energy Fernando Coelho Filho announced that DG had an important role to play in driving solar PV across the country, PV Tech caught up with Rodrigo Sauaia, the director of Brazil’s solar industry association (Absolar), to discuss current government policy.
Solar in West Africa may have been slow to kick off, but the last year has seen notable deployment across the region. Mahama Kappiah, executive director of the West Africa's Regional Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency discusses what potential solar has to revolutionise the energy sector in a region that suffers from severe power deficits.