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MGN Weekly: Are Indian Microgrids a Failure? Will Pittsburgh’s ‘Grid of Microgrids’ Succeed? …and More Microgrid News — May 18, 2017

india microgrid failurePoor Indian household (farm) 6. House and cows in yard. Andhra Pradesh, Anantapur

Solar microgrids in India’s northern Uttar Pradesh state did little to improve household incomes, encourage business ownership, or reduce the long hours that people spend on daily household work, a new study finds. According to the year-long, randomized survey of nearly 1,300 households in 81 non-electrified rural communities, villagers did buy less kerosene for their lamps, since they could flip on light bulbs at night. But their lives were otherwise unchanged, showing that local officials, energy companies, and NGOs alike need to address other pressing issues — such as underfunded schools or dismal job prospects — before rural electrification can really lift people out of poverty.