Briquettes & balance sheets: How can we plug microfinance into sustainable energy?

> Posted by Jon Pattee
Creating synergies between decades of microfinance work and the expanding sustainable energy sector will be the topic tackled at a roundtable this Thursday, December 2nd, in Washington, DC.
“The most exciting thing about connecting microfinance with sustainable energy is the power to leverage the great work that microfinance outreach has done in the past 20 years to bring people the newest, most life-improving affordable technologies,” said David Levaï of the Center for Financial Inclusion, a roundtable speaker.
Levaï and Sonali Rohatgi (FINCA) will share the microphone in an interactive discussion about what works in this field, what doesn’t, and building on lessons learned. Levaï connects energy providers and microfinance institutions in order to offer modern and affordable energy solutions to the base of the pyramid. Rohatgi oversees the implementation of new product and technology-driven delivery channel projects.
Those interested in attending the roundtable should RSVP here, and bring ideas, questions, and perspectives on microfinance and energy poverty. The event will run 9:00-10:30am event and will take place at the AED IDEA:Exchange at 1875 Connecticut Ave,
Many vulnerable people live far off their country’s power grid and can’t access energy products such as electricity for lights and home appliances. This impacts children’s health and education, cuts into households’ finances and reduces small businesses productivity.
With this in mind, partners ACCION and FINCA International are engaged in pilot activities that facilitate partnerships between MFIs, service providers, and vulnerable populations in Uganda, Mali, Afghanistan, and Tanzania.
These pilots under the FIELD-Support Leader with Associates (LWA) are exploring opportunities to work with MFIs to impact productivity and quality of life for their clients by using environmentally sustainable and cost-effective energy technologies such as solar power and biomass briquettes.


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