How the Scarcity of Electricity Affects Families and Children Around the World
Will it ever be possible for the entire population to have access to reliable and sustainable energy? Whilst we may all have some concerns about the sustainability of our energy sources now and for the future, a large percentage of the population is still struggling without access to any reliable energy sources at all.
Developing countries already suffer from a lack of food, clean water, and poverty, so with the addition of energy poverty, an already suffering population is even further denied the means to a good quality of life. Without reliable energy sources, healthcare facilities must treat people in the dark, even in emergencies, as well as lacking the power to use sterilising equipment and store vaccines correctly. Emergency procedures and childbirth in low lighting or the dark puts patients at serious risk and limits the number of night-time services available. Unreliable energy means the safety of vaccines and medicines is undermined, as the correct storage requirements cannot be guaranteed. Sustainable and reliable energy sources should be accessible worldwide, especially in the case of healthcare providers.
Schools without electricity do not have access to the internet and invaluable online resources. Teachers also lack the ability to create presentations, printouts, and use multimedia teaching methods. This limits the quality of education they can provide and deters well-trained teachers from working in schools that do not have electricity. Without electricity, that also means no fans or air conditioning, and no classes or study time during evenings as there is no adequate source of light. It also affects school attendance, as many children are burdened with the responsibility of collecting firewood or clean drinking water for their families. Solar lighting and solar-powered water pumps would provide communities with more study time in the evenings, as well as better health from cleaner water. Children would not be missing school from water-borne illnesses and disease.
The economic development of places without reliable energy sources is severely limited. Businesses and companies must rely on incredibly expensive generators for their energy supply, as they do not have connections to the grid. This limits their growth, expansion, and productivity. Without reliable energy sources, aspiring innovators and young people trying to forge careers have no access to the internet, technology, and tools needed to kickstart their futures. Just try to imagine how you would live your lives and do your jobs efficiently without reliable electricity. It would be impossible, right?
The importance of energy poverty is often overlooked, but the impact that it has on the growth and development of countries is outstanding. The development of other countries would also be beneficial to Britain, as more business links can be established, and valuable cultural and economic connections made.
Whilst providing energy to the rest of the population is something that we would all like to do, attaining a sustainable source of energy is also something that needs to be achieved. If we can make sure the rest of the world has access to reliable energy, it would be even better to make that energy source sustainable too. With climate change a big issue, the switch to sustainable energy is incredibly important. It will be much easier to provide communities with smaller-scale, off-the-grid energy sources, and this will be a much better and more resilient option with the environmental issues ahead of us. It is important that we work together with countries like Africa, to achieve worldwide access to sustainable energy. Development across the world will benefit all, and this is a matter we should all be facing together.
Access to reliable energy is fundamental to the quality of life and the development and progression of communities and countries. Energy poverty is a link to the economic poverty trapping a huge percentage of the world’s population. If we can take more steps towards the improvement of sustainable energy and providing the rest of the world with reliable energy sources, the world will be taking a big step in the right direction.