In order to close the energy gap in rural Africa, mini-grids are essential.
According to the IRENA 2023 study, Kenya is leading the way in the implementation of African mini-grids.
Jobs are created by mini-grid projects like the GMG Facility in Kenya.
Mini-grids will play an increasingly important role in closing the remaining gaps in electricity access, particularly in remote rural areas. Sub-Saharan Africa had about 500 mini-grid installations in 2010.
Despite the fact that the number has significantly increased, there must be a far larger acceleration. More than 3000 installations already exist. One estimate (World Bank, 2023) claims that more than 160,000 mini-grids will be required to meet access demands.
According to the Renewable Energy and Jobs Annual Review 2023 by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), an intergovernmental organization that aids nations in their transition to a sustainable energy future, “Kenya features prominently in the region, having deployed a significant share of Africa’s mini-grids.”
The International Labour Organization has assessed the effects on employment of Kenya’s 33-location, largely solar PV-based Green Mini-Grid (GMG) Facility Programme, which is sponsored by the EU.
A typical mini-grid is thought to need 7 and 104 persons, respectively, for the design and feasibility phase and another month for construction, according to studies (Oyuma, Game, and Lieuw-Kie-Song, 2023).
The resulting 9.5 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs, almost all of which are held by men, are equal to 0.7 and 8.8 FTE jobs. While wiring work pays KES 1 600 (USD 15.025) and field engineers and home mappers, for example, get KES 2 700 (USD 25.355) per day on average, nearly half of the jobs in the building phase do not. Most of the positions are entry-level.