Notes from the Field : Rajasthan

Rajasthan is poised to be declared as a “power surplus” state, which means that it would be able to produce more electricity than it consumes. And yet, large swaths of poor tribal households remain unconnected to the grid. In the popular tourist destination of Udaipur alone, 80 percent of the district is rural, and close to half of them still use kerosene for home lighting. There is a growing recognition that last mile grid connectivity to remote, scattered households is a costly affair, but it is a gap that decentralized generation can bridge. Based on our learnings from electricity mapping and multi-stakeholder engagement in Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh and Orissa, a district level energy planning is being undertaken in Udaipur. While expanding reliable energy access is the primary goal, processes through which the district administration can leverage existing schemes in low income housing, financial inclusion and rural livelihoods to incorporate decentralized generation, are also being explored. For this we are partnering with World Resources Institute (WRI), along with active grassroot support from Boond, one of SELCO’s incubatees.

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