Now, solar power provides affordable and sustainable electricity to at least 40,900 Syrian refugees living in up to 10,470 shelters. Each family can have light inside the shelter, connect fridges and fans, and charge their phones, helping them keep in touch with relatives and friends abroad.
With the new extension, UNHCR will save US$2 million a year and the camp’s CO2 emissions will be reduced by around 4,500 tons a year. By mid-2019, a further extension will mean that renewable energy will supply 70% of the camp’s energy demands, saving yet more money and carbon.
The plant provided income for 50 refugees who were employed in the construction of the solar plant. Another 120 are employed on a rotating basis to carry out internal house wiring from the electrical network, supported by 10 trained refugee electricians who ensure the safety and quality of these connections.
Per Heggenes, IKEA Foundation CEO, says: “We’re incredibly proud to support UNHCR in bringing renewable energy to Azraq. The solar plant—and this new extension—is helping the families and children who live there lead a safer and more dignified life, with more opportunities for study, work, play and keeping in touch with the world outside the camp.”
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