According to the studies done by the United Nations, approximately 14 hours are spent by women on both domestic and economical works. Further, women have to bear almost 53% of the total burden of work in the developing economies. In the rural areas, women are more likely to spend long hours caring for their families and also work as the breadwinners of the family.

In the past years, there has been a lot of talk about the value of clean energy sources to make daily life better for mankind in general and women, specifically, since they are responsible for running the households. India is a developing country and still lacks complete energy solutions which can give women the ease to do their work without too much effort.

Need for Renewable Energy Sources for Women

There cannot be any doubt about the fact that if we give women clean energy, through renewable energy sources, it will improve the quality of life of every household. Most of the rural Indian population still thrives on fuel like coal, kerosene, and firewood to fulfil the necessary requirements of energy for cooking, cleaning, etc. Providing renewable energy solutions also means preserving the human capital.

  • A large part of the population residing in rural and urban areas is landless, and rendering energy solutions to them can help in harnessing energy as a source of revenue by moulding it into something useful.
  • Making renewable energy accessible at the grass root levels would mean enabling women to run a business independently, profitably and in an environment-friendly manner.
  • For instance, 24*7 lighting in rural areas would allow them to extend their working hours outdoors and inside their homes too.
  • Participation of women in building up and expansion of business would curtail the current marginalization of their contribution to the economy. Eventually, it helps downsize the poverty levels.
  • It is time to stop perceiving women as the passive consumers of energy and instead assist them to become passive providers of energy.

How renewable energy is transforming lives of women across the nation:

Renewable Energy Empowering Women as Leaders:

  • Taking up projects independently would boost up their confidence and teach them to manage and operate work all by themselves.
  • This would give them with the much-needed driving force to stand as capable, independent individuals in society.
  • One such project is Solar Grannies. This is the project which brings into limelight an important yet underestimated section of women — The Older generation!!
  • In the rural areas, women are very vulnerable to losing their social value as they age (conventionally).
  • This particular project, initiated by Barefoot College in Rajasthan trains older women of the rural areas to become professionals in solar engineering.
  • This allows women to change the perceived notion that society has of them being obsolete. It also enables them to raise their social standards.
  • Solar grannies, after a six-month training program, return to their homes equipped with nuts, bolts, circuits, and screwdrivers; leading the community on a solar energy path.

Empowering women through local workforce development.

  • Solar power projects in an area enable women to take up green jobs and contribute to the development while still staying in the vicinity of their homes.
  • Women emerge as clean energy managers, trainers, business entrepreneurs and technicians.
  • In the Sunderbans Delta of West Bengal, a project run by TERI and RKM primarily employs women to operate the solar lantern charging systems.
  • Solar lantern charging stations were installed and then managed by women. The ladies would charge the lanterns and rent them out.
  • This would, in turn, generate revenue which would help them in expanding the venture from solar lanterns to installing Solar PV systems.
  • This proves beneficial monetarily and makes women self-sufficient.

Renewable energy empowering women as clean energy entrepreneurs.

  • Due to the revolution taking place in the energy sources we use, solar power is becoming the most attractive choice as a source of energy.
  • “From the day solar panels are installed, there has not been a single day we have bought coal or kerosene to light up our homes or to cook food.” says a village native who basks in the sunshine every day.
  • At the health centre, there is always warm water for patients; solar power managed refrigerators for preserving vaccines and adequate lighting during both day and night.

Renewable energy sources are paving the path for the elevating the status of women in the rural society. Solar power projects are especially helping women to get the status they deserve. These projects not only bring gender parity but also lend several economic and environmental benefits for the society.

renewable energy empowering women

Originally published at on April 8, 2017.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Delta Power India

Delta Power is successfully delivering cutting edge technology solar energy generation and air quality monitoring products since 1994.