Powering countries, empowering people

Watts Up With That?

Affordable energy brings jobs, improved living standards and pursuit of happiness 

electricity_access

By Paul Driessen

For 16 years, in a scene out of pre-industrial America, Thabo Molubi and his partner made furniture in South Africa’s outback, known locally as the “veld.” Lacking even a stream to turn a water wheel and machinery, they depended solely on hand and foot power. But then an electrical line reached the area.

The two installed lights, and power saws and drills. Their productivity increased fourfold. They hired local workers to make, sell and ship more tables and chairs, of better quality, at higher prices, to local and far away customers. Workers had more money to spend, thereby benefitting still more families.

Living standards climbed, as families bought lights, refrigerators, televisions, computers and other technologies that many Americans and Europeans simply take for granted. The community was propelled into the modern era, entrepreneurial spirits were unleashed…

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