Madagascar is one of the most bio-diverse countries on earth. Yet 90 percent of its unique rainforest has already been destroyed. Due to the lack of electricity, many people in the villages rely on wood as their primary source of energy.
The first wind energy centre in Madagascar is being established. Furthermore, communities are successively provided with small wind energy plants built with the population. This develops the region and save the rainforest.
Wind energy for Madagascar
Mad’Eole employs a double strategy. Firstly, the project looks to set up Madagascar’s first wind turbine park in order to support and enhance renewable energy supply as well as promote sustainable development. Parallel to this, each region of the island will be successively fitted out with wind energy facilities. Villagers themselves must also be heavily engaged in the project. Around 10 percent of costs, in the form of local materials and work, have been carried out by the locals. The energy will be supplied at reasonable prices while also generating enough income to maintain the facilities long-term. The not-for-profit organisation Mad’Eole has also secured technical support.
Using an alternative energy source reduces the need for firewood, greatly easing the pressure on Madagascar’s rainforests. This protection of rainforests equates to a 14,000 tonne reduction in of CO2 emissions throughout the project’s timeframe.
Wind energy is particularly applicable to Madagascar given the extraordinarily positive wind data that the island’s 5,000 kilometer-long coast offers. Even during the rainy season between January and March, when winds are not so strong, high wind yields are still achievable.
The goals of the project
1. The population of the region will receive incentives to reduce the use of wood charcoal in favour of renewable wind energy. Pressure on the region’s forests will be greatly diminished and will help lead to long-lasting CO2 emissions reductions.
2. Dependence on crude oil for energy production will also be reduced as will emissions of carbon dioxide.
3. The North will be supplied with renewable energy (other renewable energies will also be integrated alongside wind energy).
4. The project will contribute to poverty alleviation as solid job opportunities will be offered for qualified candidates in the fields of development, surveillance and maintenance as well as a few skilled tradesmen.
Mad'Eole in Europe: Förderverein Mad'Eole
Switzerland: Stefan Frey, Dornacherstrasse 8, BP 355, CH-4603 Olten