WASHINGTON — Rockefeller Foundation President and former USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah said Monday, the development community needs to rethink the way it defines poverty so it is based on measuring energy connectivity.
“Power and electricity are really the baseline for development and poverty reduction, and we at the Rockefeller Foundation believe that we should look very carefully at redefining poverty in energy consumption terms,” Shah said at an event in Washington.
“The standard measures of global poverty are still measured ultimately in a basket of goods that emanates from total calories mindset. And total calories is probably not the right measure anymore of what poverty really is and energy consumption might be.”
Three hundred million people in India still don’t have access to power, and the Rockefeller Foundation’s Smart Power for Rural Development is a $75 million program that works to build partnerships around decentralized renewable energy solutions. Launched in 2015, it brings together energy services companies, local and national governments, businesses, and technical experts to build minigrids that use solar energy to power villages.
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