Alternative Sources of Energy in Informal Settlements in Accra, Ghana

This study explores two questions:

  • What alternative sources of energy can be installed in informal settlements to ensure an affordable, reliable and sustainable supply?
  • What are the parameters of the given project(s) that would qualify it (them) for funding from public and private sources (e.g. international development banks, foreign aid, philanthropy)?

For this purpose, this study reviews the use of alternative energy sources in informal settlements in rapidly urbanizing places, including waste to energy and solar. Based on this review, this project undertakes a pilot study of the application of an alternative source(s) of energy in the study areas and brings the ideas to the project preparation stage to qualify for funding from international sources.

Grant Result

Accessing clean and efficient energy is a critical challenge for informal settlement dwellers. While renewable energy holds promise, implementation is incipient. This policy digest explores efforts to introduce renewable energy to informal settlements in Accra, Ghana. How are residents responding and what challenges confront them?

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Eugenie Birch

Lawrence C. Nussdorf Chair of Urban Research and Education
Eugénie L. Birch is co-director of the Penn Institute for Urban Research, Lawrence C. Nussdorf Chair of Urban Research and Education, and chair of the Graduate Group in City and Regional Planning.