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Sustainable energy for developing countries

The Helios Foundation for Sustainable Development, a not-for-profit venture to improve access to affordable and sustainable energy for low-income communities in developing countries, has been set up by former executives of Scottish Power and Shell.

Helios will provide:

  • The expertise to overcome barriers to the development of modern energy;
  • A framework of social enterprises within which projects can mature and capacity can be built; and
  • A credible ‘de-risked’ conduit for applying corporate social responsibility and other funds to carefully selected projects that supply affordable energy to poor communities on a sustainable basis.

The sustainable energy pilot project

Helios’ pilot project is a mini-grid which will provide electricity to 13 villages in rural Tanzania.

An existing small hydropower plant will be upgraded, and a biomass plant fuelled by agricultural waste (predominantly rice husks) will be developed.

Helios says it will work with local communities, partners and international development organisations to develop local skills and expertise and to ensure the success of its sustainable energy projects. Current established links with other initiatives on sustainable development and energy provision include the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

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