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Empowering Bihar

Case studies for the energy deficit and driving change

Publication - October 21, 2010
Bihar is India’s third most populated state, and more than half the people live below the poverty line. For many years the state has been immobilised by an obdurate caste system and linked political corruption, and many have little or no access to that essential provision: a consistent energy service.

Renewable energy can easily be harnessed on a small scale, at or near the place where that energy is needed. This ‘decentralised’ approach to energy production means that a system can be designed according to what resources are locally available, and what the local demand is. With intelligent design that appraises both of these at a local level, and a commitment to use resources in a sustainable manner, decentralised renewable energy systems can stimulate the local economy.

Systems can focus on delivering the energy services needed by people in that area, which can change with location, as opposed to just supplying energy. They can also be empowering, providing the opportunity for people to operate and govern their own energy services, ensuring they are not disadvantaged by the urban and industry bias that currently dominates the centralised system.