Access to electricity can end extreme poverty

A fifth of the world’s population don’t have access to electricity. Join our campaign to fight for them.

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Imagine not being able to turn on a light, boil a kettle, or keep food safe to eat. This is life for 1.2 billion people.

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1
people living without electricity
4
people die every year from cooking with wood or dung stoves
800
children die every year from contaminated water

"Energy is the golden thread that connects economic growth, social equity, and environmental sustainability."

Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General

"...a light where currently there is darkness; the energy needed to lift people out of poverty - that's what opportunity looks like"

Barack Obama, President of the United States

"If you could pick just one thing to lower the price of, to reduce poverty, you would pick energy. If you gave me only one wish this is the wish I would pick, this is the one with the greatest impact … it’s the most important investment we can make for the world."

Bill Gates, Philanthropist

Our mission

Electricity holds the key to ending poverty. With it, we can help the 1.2 billion people who don’t have access to power – and radically improve their life chances. 

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Get the facts

Find out more about the far-reaching social and economic consequences of life without electricity.

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Story of Dharnai

If you want to know why electricity matters, ask the people of Dharnai – a typical Indian village of around 3,000 people in Bihar, Eastern India.

Story of Dharnai

Latest updates

AfDB welcomes Japan’s offer of advanced coal technology

| Affordable electricity | No Comments

The African Development Bank (AfDB)’s director general for East Africa has warmly welcomed Japan’s plans to provide East African countries with the latest ultra-efficient coal technology. In July, Japan launched…

The US position on multilateral development bank finance for fossil fuels is “pro-poor” and “pro US jobs”

| Developing Countries | No Comments

With a chronic lack of affordable, reliable energy one of the biggest obstacles to tackling poverty in the developing world, experts have come out in support of the US announcement…

Aid Expert: If we don’t solve energy poverty, Africa will become a “continent on fire”

| Developing Countries | No Comments

“Africa is literally the dark continent because so few people have the lights on. Better we sort that before it becomes a continent on fire.” That’s the dire warning issued…

African Development Bank breaks ranks with the World Bank to back coal in Kenya

| Kenya | No Comments

The African Development Bank is in in talks with Kenya to part-fund the construction of a new coal plant, bank officials revealed this week. Kenya has some of the most…

UK should follow Japan on energy

| Developing Countries | One Comment

The Prime Minister of the UK, Theresa May is this week visiting Japan. Although the continued aggression by North Korea is set to dominate, it is expected that the Mrs…

The US is backing calls for an end to restrictions on fossil fuels in the poorest countries

| Developing Countries | No Comments

The United States has announced it will now support developing countries’ calls to stop the World Bank restricting the funding of fuel power stations in the poorest countries. The move…

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