R&B singer Akon has taken the initiative to provide solar power to 600 million people in Africa by launching a new solar academy called ‘Akon Lighting Africa’. The “Solar Academy”, which opened this summer in Bamako, Mali’s capital, plans to teach engineers how to install and maintain solar panels and micro-grids (small electrical grids) to provide power to a finite region. For this purpose, European experts will be engaged in the field of providing training equipment and programs. Akon Lighting Africa has acquired a credit line of up to $1 billion from construction giant China Jiangsu International and will work in remote areas with the least resources.
Africa boasts 320 days of sunshine a year, so solar power is the best way to enable those with electricity who don’t have it. The sun’s power, combined with innovative technologies, will help provide jobs for almost 70% of Africans under 35. Sustainable job opportunities are going to contribute to the project and African residents in more ways than one. Along with the basic material handling of solar panels, graduates from the academy are expected to invent new, pioneering, technical solutions in solar energy.
The Solar Academy launch was announced at the second United Nations Sustainable Energy for All Forum in New York.