Shell launches smarter energy collaboration for communities
Technologies from the bright energy businesses will be showcased in Rio de Janeiro’s Santa Marta community this month, before they are installed in communities that require urgent access to cleaner energy.
The entrepreneurs’ innovations are being brought together in Santa Marta as it is benefitting from an installation by Insolar, a solar energy start-up that is one of the featured entrepreneurs being supported by Shell. Insolar is fitting photovoltaic panels to some of Santa Marta’s most widely used community centres, including a samba school and crèche, which are central to the life of the community’s 8,000 residents.
Young Brazilian entrepreneur Henrique Drumond who founded Insolar sees the project as a significant step in his mission to help to bring cleaner energy to Brazil, where solar accounts for only 0.02 per cent of the energy mix, with only 1,731 small-scale solar systems connected to its grid – despite more than 2,000 hours of sunlight blazing on the country each year.
In Rio alone, an estimated 1.4 million residents of the city’s 763 favelas are affected by rising energy prices and unreliable power supply. The Insolar installation is expected to generate the equivalent of 185,000 days of free, clean power over the lifetime of the solar panels. Showcasing bright energy technologies in Rio kick-starts a global ‘energy relay’ to show collaboration with leading energy entrepreneurs is vital to help to secure a bright energy future, and to invite the world to support and participate in the creation of smart energy solutions.
The innovations that will be displayed in Santa Marta alongside Insolar include:
• bio-bean – which explores how to reduce the UK’s CO2 emissions from transport by turning coffee dregs into a sustainable transport fuel,
• Capture Mobility – demonstrates how roadside turbulence from cars and trucks can generate clean power for local communities,
• GravityLight – improves health and wellbeing in energy deprived communities by using a simple pulley and weight system to generate electricity,
• MotionECO – uses waste cooking oil to help to create a market for renewable diesel in China (in transport, public services and logistics) and discourage the harmful reuse of cooking oil, and
• Pavegen – converts power from footsteps into renewable energy that can power a community
Joining the #makethefuture movement as ambassadors are six award-winning international musicians: Oscar-winner Jennifer Hudson, Brazilian singer Luan Santana, British performer
Pixie Lott, American DJ/Producer Steve Aoki, China’s pop star Tan WeiWei and Nigerian idol Yemi Alade.
The artists are uniting with the energy entrepreneurs and Shell to help shine a light on the worldwide need for access to more and cleaner energy.
A new interactive music video will also showcase each of the smart energy innovations.
Shell and the ambassadors are inviting people to show support for the Insolar project to help bring solar power to communities and homes in Brazil. You can sign the pledge by visiting www.shell.com/showyoursupport
Proceeds from sales of Luan Santana’s latest DVD, 1977, will go towards the Insolar project to help to fund the installation of more solar panels in low-income communities.
Royal Dutch Shell Chief Executive Ben van Beurden said:
“I’m personally inspired by the ingenuity of these innovators, and the ambition to forge a brighter energy future for our planet. Collaboration and entrepreneurialism are essential to finding energy solutions that can enable development and a decent way of life for people across the world while reducing carbon dioxide emissions. These values are central to our #makethefuture campaign to help achieve a better energy future together.”
Insolar director Henrique Drumond said: “My vision was to create a social enterprise that provides communities with a cleaner source of energy. On my journey through the Shell programmes that support entrepreneurs, including Shell Iniciativa Jovem, and the Accelerator, the company has always supported this vision. I am thrilled to see this collaboration brought to life in Rio. We hope Santa Marta will be an inspiration to other bright minds and unlock more answers to tomorrow’s energy challenges in communities, cities and countries around the world.”
The launch of the global ‘energy relay’ will be celebrated on September 28 with some of the #makethefuture ambassadors performing a series of concerts at the heart of the Santa Marta community, during which the music video for the Best Day of My Life will be premiered.
In October, #makethefuture will move on to Kenya, where Shell is working with GravityLight – a UK-based start-up that has developed a gravity-powered lamp designed to improve health and wellness across Kenya by bringing clean, affordable light to low income homes.
The concert celebrating #makethefuture in Santa Marta and the Best Day of My Life music video will be available on September 28 via facebook.com/Shell.
Jennifer Hudson said: “We all face moments of adversity in life and, often times, it’s simply the hand one has been dealt. But there is so much that we can do to support one another as a unified force and that is just one of the many reasons why I’m supporting the Santa Marta community. My son David turned seven this year, and I want him to grow up and inherit a planet where everyone is working together on one accord for the greater good.”
Luan Santana added: “I am honored to be one of the six artists participating in this project. I’m committed to make my voice echo Shell and the entrepreneurs’ social action. Music produces an exchange of energy between audience and artist, and I hope #makethefuture rocks the five continents as it takes its energy relay around the world.”
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