While many countries are trying to wean themselves off expensive and dirty fossil fuel energy, much of the world is still waiting on any type of electricity. Some 1.4 billion people lack access to electricity, and rather than start them down the same path we’re trying to get off, the hope is that they can forgo the journey and just relax at the renewable-energy finish line.

However, as one would expect, it’s not as simple as installing huge wind and solar farms throughout parts of Africa and Asia. Most of the people in need of electricity live in rural areas, lacking infrastructure to connect to a power grid or the upfront money to install solar locally. Keep reading →