Covid Impact on Empower a Billion Lives II and Concept Paper Extension
To take a prudent course in consideration of the unknown changes that the continuing global pandemic may cause, the Global Steering Committee of Empower a Billion Lives has adjusted the timeline for EBL II to add in more flexibility for EBL II teams to do the essential field-testing necessary for this competition.
EBL II will:
1) Continue to accept Concept Paper submissions until 1 April 2022
2) Full proposals are now due by 1 June 2022
3) Field-testing can take place anytime between 1 August 2022 and 15 January 2023. Teams will then engage in a Field-testing interview and teams who pass this round will be invited to the Global Finals
4) EBL II Global Final to be held 17 March – 20 March 2023 at the IEEE Applied Power Electronics Conference (APEC2023) in Orlando, Florida
The Guidelines have been updated to reflect the new timeline. We urge you to review all the available resources and join the Competition.
Introducing IEEE Empower a Billion Lives
IEEE Empower a Billion Lives is a global competition aimed at fostering innovation to develop solutions to electricity access. Solutions are expected to be scalable, regionally relevant, holistic, and leverage 21st-century technologies with exponentially declining prices.
Deep Dive into the Guidelines Webinar was held on November 16, 2021
This Webinar provides an overview of the competition guidelines and structure ahead of the April 1, 2022 deadline for the initial 3-page concept paper. Please review the guidelines prior to the webinar.
This webinar is available under Resources
Energy access is a global challenge
There are 3 billion people in the world living in energy poverty, and over 1 billion people without any access to electricity. So far, only 1.8 million people have gained tier 2 energy access by using off-grid electric services. To address energy poverty, more of the same may not be the answer. New strategies are needed to scale energy access solutions 1000x.
Energy access means opportunity
Access to electricity is critical to health care delivery and to the overarching goal of universal health coverage. The WHO defines access to essential medicines and technologies as one of the key factors in ensuring universal health coverage. Most of these essential technologies require electricity, and without electricity, many health care interventions simply cannot be provided. Despite this, a study found that only 26% of health facilities in the Sub-Saharan Africa has access to reliable electricity.
Water is the most essential element of life; it is required for basic sustenance, health, and irrigation. Nearly one billion people do not have access to clean, safe water. The United Nations estimates that Sub-Saharan Africa alone loses 40 billion hours per year collecting water; that’s the same as a whole year’s worth of labor by France’s entire workforce! Electrical pumps are the most effective method to alleviate this crisis and provide clean and safe water for all.
Education is widely recognized as one of the most essential components for poverty reduction. According to UNDESA, about 90% of children in Sub-Saharan Africa go to primary schools that lack electricity, while 27% of village schools in India lack electricity access, thus not being able to operate electric lights, refrigerators, fans, computers, and printers. Electrified schools outperform non-electrified schools on key educational indicators, have better staff retention, and can in some cases enable broader social and economic development of communities.
For more than a billion people worldwide, kerosene lamps are the primary lighting source, which is expensive, unsafe and carcinogenic. The World Bank estimates that breathing kerosene fumes is the equivalent of smoking two packs of cigarettes a day, and 66% of adult females with lung cancer in developing nations are nonsmokers.
Electricity is a key component of economic empowerment. Electricity can increase household per capita income by 39 percent. Businesses operate at higher levels of productivity, farmers can run cleaner irrigation systems and processing machines that improve their yields and thus, their income.
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