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Solar energy solutions provider Renewvia Energy is helping underserved communities and businesses in rural Kenya to access the energy they need to improve their lives and bolster their economy.

The US backed contractor, Renewvia, conducted a year-long solar microgrid feasibility study in 2017, talking to all stakeholders and community members at length about their needs and concerns.

Equipment set up inside the power house. Credit: Renewvia

"Conducting solar feasibility studies at this level provided our company specific and unique insight otherwise unobtainable in any commercial manner,” said Trey Jarrard, CEO of Renewvia.

“The knowledge from the effort will allow for a scalable off-grid power solution for multitudes of Kenyan communities without requiring large upfront purchases and ongoing power asset management associated with individual solar kits,”Jarrard added.

In January, the company began construction of three sites in the East African country and plans to complete an additional ten sites this year. Read more: European bank backs solar growth

Beneficiaries from Lake Victoria to the Indian Ocean

Through this project, Renewvia seeks to connect around 4,000 homes and businesses in 2018. The sites are in multiple counties from Lake Victoria all the way to the Indian Ocean.

The renewable company has partnered with both the U.S. Trade and Development Agency’s (USTDA) Power Africa initiative and community and government agencies in Kenya to drive the scheme.

Pam Onyanyo, director of Sub-Saharan Africa for Renewvia, applauded the role of the USTDA. “The contribution from the USTDA at the onset of this development effort was critical and we are thankful for this partnership. It expedited the development of a financeable investment-grade product that will yield returns for both Kenyans and U.S. solar product manufacturers.”

African Utility Week