Saudi-based Acwa Power said it has joined forces with Ecohz, key player in energy sector that offers global renewable energy solutions to businesses, organisations and electricity providers, to empower local women and support communities in Morocco.
A global leader in water desalination and power generation, Acwa Power said this Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) project will help increase income and improve livelihoods of the local female population.
It recognises the social capital created by women; rewards women’s contributions to sustainable environment communities; provides access to women in local communities to basic needs including education and healthcare; and increases the income and employability of women to help ensure gender equality, said the statement from the company.
Stemming from its commitment to communities it operates in, and following its development of the world’s largest concentrated solar power plan project, Noor Power Plant in Morocco, Acwa Power concludes the year by empowering women around the plant through increasing income and employability and improving education.
Acwa Power works close with Wocan, the international membership network working towards gender equality, and creator of W+ Standard (W+) (which measures the impact of projects on women empowerment and increases their access to resources and capital, scaling up solutions to climate change, food security and poverty).
Acwa Power CEO and President Paddy Padmanathan, said: “We are pleased and proud to be contributing to female empowerment through our CSR work that is a result of our investment in the renewable energy sector. Our commitment in countries we operate in extends beyond supplying electricity to the grid.”
“We are passionate about our model of developing plants in remote areas and actively collaborating with the local communities. This results in empowerment of local communities; creation of employment opportunities; and generation of economic activity – which we consider our long-term commitment. We are proud to be working with W+ to contribute towards increasing income and employability,” he added.
The collaboration between the three industry leaders will create better project outcomes and improve lives. The CSR project will enable credible and measurable social co-benefits in renewable energy projects.
Tom Lindberg, the managing director at Ecohz, said: “We work to change corporations’ energy behaviour and are enthusiastic to be able to empower women at the same time – contribute to both SDG 7 (clean energy) and SDG 5 (gender equality).”
“In coordination with Wocan’s pursuit of sustainable development, it has been reported that W+ is the first instrument that offers the possibility to measure, verify, and report the fifth and seventh critical sustainable development goals (SDGs), which are part of the larger 17 SDGs set by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015,” he added.
David Ungar, the executive director, Green House Gas Mitigation and Sustainability at Acwa Power, said: “We are in an era where we are able to have very direct positive impact in the communities in which we operate. The W+ units help us to achieve our goal to make a measurable difference in-line with the United Nations SDGs.”
“This is just one key development we are making to enhance the way we improve the lives in rural communities,” he added.