By Lovemore Khomo, Lilongwe, Malawi
In an attempt to advocate and ensure environmental sustainability in Malawi; its old capital city of Zomba has for the first time installed street solar lights which has also made environmentalists acknowledge about the development.
The project is installing 261 street lights which also wealth about US$394 000.
In today’s world, sustainable energy advocates and governments see the future in clean energy rather than the use of fossil fuels, nuclear and others.
A country like Malawi has been relying on hydropower stations for its electrification which now has come to its old as locals are experiencing power blackouts all day which has exerted pressure on the already struggling economy.
Speaking with Mercy Chaluma, Zomba City Council spokesperson disclosed that currently a third of the lights have already been installed and the project is being implemented with funds from the Government’s Roads Fund Administration (RFA).
She added that the Council opted for solar-powered lights as a way of promoting green energy and reducing the pressure on Malawi’s hydroelectricity.
“Apart from that, the solar lights are sustainable and the Council will not be pressured with electricity bills. The lights are self-operational as they switch on automatically, when darkness falls, and switch off when the day breaks.”
Chaluma adds; “The Council noted that some people have fears that maybe the solar lights will not be as powerfully lit during the rainy season and in winter, but they should be assured that the lights store sufficient heat and they don’t need much light to lighten up, so they should be able to give enough light even during these seasons.”
“Among other things, the street lights are expected to boost the City’s economic activities because people will not have to leave their business premises early because of darkness; they will boost security, and will also add on to the existing beauty of the City.”
There is so much to do in order for governments and people start recognizing the power of green energy.