, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 17 – The Coca Cola Company has rolled out a project for the distribution of solar panels to operators of the firm’s soft drink kiosks.
This project will see owners of Coca Cola kiosks enjoy access to clean, affordable energy to power small scale needs like light, charging phone and radio.
The Managing Director of Nairobi Bottlers Limited Patrick Pech said the project will have considerable social, environmental and financial benefits.
“The project is being scaled up in the next 12 months to an estimated 2,000 small scale businesses in Nairobi and its environs,” Pech said during the launch on Wednesday, which is in partnership with One Degree Solar.
“As a company, we value partnerships that impact positively on the lives of our customers and business partners, and that’s why we believe this project with One Degree Solar will go a long way in helping retailers and kiosk owners extend their operating hours, reduce their operating costs, and experience the numerous benefits of renewable energy,” Pech said.
Pech further said that the project will help light areas without electricity and that they had adopted a power project that is affordable.
“Approximately half of the 1.3 billion people living without electricity globally are in Africa,” Pech revealed adding that this was as a result of increase in both energy and population, “the lag in provision of electricity is expected to cause an increase in the number of people without access to power in Africa.”
“Solar-charged Bright-box powers up four light bulbs and charges several phones per day. It’s great to see the system lead to such meaningful benefits for entrepreneurs and small business owners.” Gaurav Manchanda, Founder of One Degree Solar said.
“With so many micro-enterprises and households without power in Kenya, some of these kiosks have literally become beacons of light in their communities.”
Pech said although the country had made significant gains in the provision of access to electricity for the 40 million Kenyans, so far only 25 percent of Kenyan households have access to grid electricity with the government targeting to raise this to 40 percent by 2020.