A holistic approach to community development: Bringing water, sanitation, heat and light to rural villages in the Himalayas
Zahnd, A. (2005) A holistic approach to community development: Bringing water, sanitation, heat and light to rural villages in the Himalayas. World Rivers Review, 20 (1). pp. 8-15.
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More than 99% of the 2 billion people without access to electricity live in developing countries, and four out of five live in rural areas. Today, 100 years after Edison’s seemingly forward-looking statement –“We will make electricity so cheap that only the rich will burn candles” – the promise of cheap, abundant electricity seems to hold true only for industrialized countries. Who anticipated that today, more people have no light in their homes than the entire world’s population in Edison’s time?
There is a clear relationship between poverty and access to electricity. The more remote the community, the greater its poverty level, and the higher the costs for electrification and other development projects. Approximately 85% of Nepal’s 26.5 million people live in the rural areas, and about half of these live in such remote areas that neither a road nor the national electricity grid will reach them for decades to come.
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