Sustainable access to modern energy services for all
Despite the availability of technical solutions, 1.3 billion people are still without any form of electricity and 3 billion people still cook over open fires.
Practical Action provides practical power: renewable, locally-sourced sustainable energy solutions which lift people out of poverty.
- Energy enables people to work their way out of poverty.
- Energy provides better access to education and other basic services.
- Energy improves health and wellbeing, especially for women and children.
Practical Action is committed to Total Energy Access, because we know from our work on the ground that energy is a powerful solution to poverty.
Using technology to challenge poverty
Practical Action aims to increase poor people's access to energy, through improving the efficiency of stoves, and through small-scale, low-cost, off-grid electricity supply.
There is no “one size fits all” answer, which is why we don’t start with the technology, but with the people who use and benefit from it. Practical Action begins by talking to the people we are working with.
Find our more about the practical, sustainable technologies that people can use to improve their lives
Practical Action believes that there does not have to be a trade-off between human development and the environment. Millions can be lifted out of poverty without ruining the planet with the help of clean sustainable energy.
Our Poor people's energy briefing series offers critical input into the fast moving and dynamic energy sector from the perspective of what matters for poor people.
Poor people's energy outlook
Practical Action has launched the Poor people’s energy outlook reports as a catalyst for a movement for change on energy access, and a source of information to support it.
The 2014 edition of the PPEO looks back at three years of analysis, to re-evaluate the key enabling role that energy plays in lifting people out of poverty. The report summarizes key lessons and evidence presented thus far and brings our learning up to date.
Energy access on our blogs
The Following is a guest post from Lily Ordano, an Associate with the Energy Program and the World Resources Institute (WRI). Practical Action is working in conjunction with WRI to produce a monthly Energy Engagement Series in Washington, DC, which focuses on energy access issues around the w...
It was drizzling when we drove to the biogas electrification project site. Going through the maze of roads, it took us 45 minutes from Narayanghat, the main market in the Chitwan district, to reach there.
Chitwan, in the southern plains in Nepal, is home not only to the magnificent royal Benga...
We get plenty of opportunities to explore Nepal working in the local development sector. This is one of the interesting aspects of our job. I have visited around 56 out of 75 districts of Nepal during the course of my professional career, but as yet not been to the upper mountainous districts.
I am a single mother, I know how difficult it can be to juggle work, run a home and look after your child. I also know what it is like to have a child who is ill. My son has an incurable muscle wasting disease. I know how it feels to desperately want to protect your child, to do anything in your ...
A small technology that brought light to Hasina Begum
Ms. Hasina Begum, aged 30, is from Kalikapur village of Atulia Union Council (UP) under Shyamnagar Upazila of the South-western coastal Satkhira district. This is an area prone to climate change and climatic extreme events such as increas...
Indoor air pollution
Nearly two million people die each year as a result of inhaling lethal smoke from kitchen stoves and fires.
But there are solutions - improved cooking stoves and simple smoke hoods can reduce indoor smoke levels by up to 80%.
Most rural people cannot access large-scale power grids, and their only alternative is small stand-alone energy schemes. We develop appropriate options, including small-scale solar photovoltaic, wind, biomass and hydro schemes
The Mulanje Electricity Generation Authority micro-hydro project is a sustainable and ambitious social enterprise - aiming to tackle the dual challenges of sustainability and scale.
Our technical information service has a wide range of downloadable resources on all aspects of energy access, free to download.
Practical Action Consulting is working with GVEP, Chatham House, UNHCR and the Norwegian Refugee Council on the Moving Energy Initiative (MEI), an innovative project that seeks to meet the energy needs of displaced people in a safe, sustainable manner, developing solutions for heating/cooling, cooking, lighting, electrification and water and sanitation.Find out more