Some months ago, we started to work in Chile, after 12 years bringing energy, water & sanitation services in Peru, Mexico and Panama that, today, benefit more than 68,000 people. Our first project in the country is carried out in Coquimbo region, where almost 3,000 households are not grid-connnected.
It is a Luz en Casa pilot project bringing access to an affordable, reliable and sustainable electricity service to a community where 50 households used petrol generators as energy source to have between 3 and 5 daily hours of electricity, with a monthly cost that could come to a half of their incomes.
Our project replaces the fossil fuel motors with solar home systems, which are safer, more efficient and environmentally sustainable, and which electricity service implies a lower expenditure in energy.
The beneficiaries have three types of systems to choose according to their needs of electricity. They are 12Vdc systems storing 140Wh/day -similar to those provided up to now- to 24Vdc-220Vac systems storing 1.28kWh/day, which will allow the use of the conventional appliances existing in the homes.
Thus, this project is going to test both the viability of this new Luz en Casa service delivery model and the new types of systems and its potential use in the rest of acciona.org projects in other countries.
Another novelty of this project, which is specifically for the Chilean context, is the payment collection supported on the Caja Vecina offices network.
Local entrepreneurs will be in charge of the Centros Luz en Casa. They will be trained to offer proximity solar home systems related services of installation, repair, advice and sale of appliances.
Besides this electrification project, which we plan to scale up and replicate in other communities, we expect to develop projects of improvement of the infrastructure and management of water & sanitation services in rural and peri-urban communities in the country.