Haiti’s economic recovery to be supported with USD$1 million solar initiative

NRG has said the money will be put towards the project, The Sun Lights the Way: Brightening Boucan Carre, in order to provide clean, safe and inexpensive electric power for fish farming, irrigation pumps, street lights and schools.

The announcement was made at the sixth annual Clinton Global Initiative in New York, a meeting of international leaders aimed at finding lasting innovative solutions to the world’s most complex challenges.

"Deploying zero-emission, renewable solar generation across a range of applications will contribute immeasurably to the quality of life and the sustainability of community living in Boucan Carre," David Crane, NRG president and chief executive officer, said. "We are honored to partner with SELF in order to help rebuild Haiti in a manner that will make it a role model for others to contribute to the transformative work carried out by the Clinton Global Initiative as they strive to assist Haiti’s efforts."

SELF will help implement the photovoltaics project. "I’m excited to partner with NRG Energy on this initiative. There’s no question that distributed, renewable energy solutions have a key role to play in helping Haiti build back better," said Robert Freling, executive director of SELF.

"Working together with NRG, along with Partners In Health, we’re going to demonstrate the practical use of solar energy to enhance the health, education and economic well-being of rural communities in Boucan Carre, which will serve as a model for the rest of Haiti."

SELF explained that it uses local labor to the extent possible on all of its projects, contracting with local companies or laborers for construction services and provides the training to create clean energy jobs for the operation and maintenance of the solar installations.

This project also increases already substantial efforts to help Haiti recover from the January 12 earthquake. Earlier this year, NRG raised a total of USD$428,000, triple-matching employee contributions and pledging USD$100,000 to the Concern Worldwide aid organization to build two new primary schools in Haiti.