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Cryptocurrency unlocks energy access in rural areas

July 19, 2018 • Mining & Energy, Top Stories

More than 1 billion people today still live without electricity

More than 1 billion people today still live without electricity

Sun Exchange, a solar micro-leasing marketplace, recently announced a new initiative in partnership with rural mini-grid solutions provider, Powerhive, which will utilise the crypto-economy to accelerate global progress towards universal energy access.

More than 1 billion people today still live without electricity, which severely inhibits economic development and basic human rights including health, education, safety and security. Sun Exchange and Powerhive have a shared mission of eliminating global energy poverty by combining sustainable, decentralised solar power with innovative technologies and financial instruments such as blockchain and digital currencies.

Through the new partnership, Powerhive has been named as the exclusive recipient of proceeds designated for solar project pre-financing from sales of the Sun Exchange SUNEX digital rewards token. Powerhive will use the funds for building solar-powered rural electrification mini-grid projects, which include revenue and livelihood enhancing programs throughout sub-saharan Africa.

The solar panels that make up these projects will subsequently be offered for sale to Sun Exchange members, who will then be able to own cells within the projects and earn decades of “solar-powered money” from the electricity the projects produce.

When fully subscribed, this process is expected to catalyse USD 23 million of capital that will accelerate Powerhive’s solar powered mini-grid roll out, by funding approximately 150 new projects that will provide power to 175,000 people currently lacking power.

In addition to providing utility-grade power to communities, Powerhive operates wealth generation programmes within them, such as the solar-powered chicken incubation ‘Kuku Poa’ initiative. Putting the available solar power to work for productive use drives overall economic development and prosperity, ensuring access to energy remains ever more affordable to the customers buying it.

“The cryptocurrency community is made up of inspired individuals eager for more than just financial gain. Our partnership with Powerhive underscores the SUNEX token sale opportunity to support a crypto project geared directly towards reducing global inequality and climate impact,” said Abraham Cambridge, Founder & CEO, Sun Exchange. “Together, we are working towards a world where no one is forced to cook with unsafe kerosene or wood-burning stoves, no child has to worry about how they will study after dark, and lack of energy access ceases to propel cycles of poverty.”

“Over the past seven years Powerhive has built a vertically integrated platform that allows us to identify, construct and operate the highest quality and lowest cost solar-powered mini-grids in Africa,” said Powerhive Founder and CEO, Christopher Hornor. “At the heart of our projects are the communities we serve.

By providing the power platform first and then layering in productive use programmes, we create a virtuous cycle of economic and personal empowerment that provides steady profits for both our customers and our investors. Our partnership with Sun Exchange will now give almost anyone the opportunity to invest in innovative low-carbon development projects in Africa and beyond.”

Through the Sun Exchange online solar panel micro-leasing platform, practically anyone, anywhere across the globe can earn income while helping to bring clean, sustainable, affordable solar power to organisations such as schools, small businesses, hospitals and NGOs in emerging markets. Sun Exchange is currently running a public token sale event for its new digital rewards token, SUNEX, which aims to make the Sun Exchange user experience more lucrative and rewarding.

Edited by Neo Sesinye
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