Fabio Rosa: Project Light
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Fabio Rosa, a brilliant Brazilian engineer who provides low-cost solar power to thousands of poor rural farmers, remote Amazon villages, and refugee camps in Africa, will be giving a talk at the University of Guelph on Thursday, November 18th.
Rosa will also receive a special award and a $100,000 charitable donation to his renowned non-profit foundation, IDEAAS, made on behalf of Ontario green energy companies True Grid Power Inc., and Canadian Solar Inc. The $100,000 will be used to purify water, construct a solar-powered community health clinic and telecom building, power up 15 households, and provide solar lanterns to school children in a remote Amazon village. The village currently has no roads, power service, sanitation or water pumping infrastructure.
An estimated 25 million Brazilians have no access to electricity, and typically earn around $2 per day. Fabio Rosa buys solar systems at bulk prices and leases them to poor Brazilians at a rate of around $12 per month, literally allowing households to go from the 19th to the 21st century in the few hours it takes to install these rooftop systems. The kits typically include a solar panel, water pump, battery, wiring, and a half dozen lights. The monthly lease rate is less than what families currently spend on kerosene, batteries, candles, and propane, and the systems often allow recipients an opportunity to increase their income by watering gardens, using small power tools, or creating electric paddocks for livestock.
Rosa was recently featured in a PBS television series called “The New Heroes” hosted by Robert Redford, and his latest project has been to supply off-grid solar power and water pumping to a refugee camp of 70,000 on the Kenya-Uganda border.
The event is sponsored by the Guelph Campus Co-operative.
Rozanski Hall, Room 103
Thursday, November 18th at 7:30 PM