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Solar Satisfaction In A Congo Town Without A Power Grid

The inhabitants of Butembo rely increasingly on solar energy, allowing households to save money and be self-sufficient.

Butembo's main street
Butembo's main street
Kennedy Wema

BUTEMBO — These days, Butembo dazzles come nightfall. Everywhere, lights illuminate houses while hundreds of others twinkle along the town’s main arteries. And yet, this important economic center of Congo’s North Kivu province isn’t connected to any official power grid.

“We used to have generators bought by the consumers’ association, but two years ago we started using solar power,” explains John Tchipenda, an electrician who specializes in renewable energies.

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May 21-22

  • A liberated Ukrainian village
  • Long COVID limbo
  • TikToker under fire
  • … and much more.
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