Crowdfund campaign to install solar lights in Soweto

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Published Jun 30, 2017


Johannesburg - In collaboration with the Philile Foundation, Greenpeace

Africa’s recently launched campaign Project Sunshine seeks to raise

R100 000 from mid-June to mid-July to install solar streetlights around a

crèche in Diepsloot. 

Project Sunshine is a crowdfunded initiative and at

midpoint the project has already raised over R30 000. With just two weeks

left to meet the target, Greenpeace is calling on all South Africans to play a

role in bringing light to underprivileged, off-grid communities by visiting and

supporting the crowdfunding.

Greenpeace Africa is offering South Africans the opportunity

to participate in assisting electricity poor communities. The current grid

simply bypasses an estimated 10% of South Africans, and for those who are connected

to the grid, being able to afford electricity becomes a new challenge.

Read also:   Cape Town goes green with street lights 

Greenpeace Africa Climate and Energy Campaigner Nhlanhla

Sibisi said: “It feels like South

Africa is a country at war with itself at

the moment, with poverty, crises and scandals around every corner. Most of us

can relate to walking down a dark street at night and feeling unsafe. Solar

streetlights can contribute towards safer streets and the fight against crime”.

Despite the widespread crime and service delivery protests

in South Africa,

City Power has actively blocked this project for years. Local authorities in Johannesburg have also

acted as a barrier to using solar energy for the electrification of off-grid


In 2015, Greenpeace Africa had aimed to complete this project

on a much larger scale, but after years of trying to get permission from

numerous City Power authorities, the project was finally downscaled.

“As far as Greenpeace Africa is concerned, this seems to

simply indicate that City Power is threatened by a project that aims to deliver

street lighting when they have no plans to electrify parts of Diepsloot for

years to come” said Melita Steele, Senior Climate and Energy Campaign Manager

for Greenpeace Africa.

“Our current electricity system is dysfunctional, and

innovative solutions like solar streetlights should be the way of the future.

This is a solution that could and should be replicated by municipalities across

the country,” said Steele.




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