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Lighting Up Orang Asli Homes: What We Have Accomplished So Far

22 December 2023
3 min read
Lighting Up Orang Asli Homes: What We Have Accomplished So Far


Here at SOLS Energy, we are driven by impact. Our primary goals are defined through our three impact objectives: facilitating energy transition, expanding energy access, and creating green jobs. In this article, we are delighted to share the details and intricacies of what we have accomplished so far, particularly in terms of providing energy access. However, before delving into the specifics, it's important to establish the context of what "providing energy access" truly means.

In Malaysia, an estimated 250,000 homes in remote rural villages live in darkness. In West Malaysia alone, approximately 200,000 Orang Asli, representing the 18 tribes of indigenous people in Malaysia, still lack access to electricity.

The root cause lies in their lack of direct access to the electricity provided by the National or State grids. Consequently, they resort to alternative energy sources, often relying on diesel or petrol generators.

While this solution may seem straightforward, it is a significant disruptor in the lives of these tribes. The cost of a generator consumes 30% of a villager's monthly income, which is only 10% of Malaysia's national average. Additionally, this expensive investment provides electricity for no more than six hours per day, rendering it insufficient for running essential household appliances such as refrigerators

We believe that every human, regardless of their location or background, has the right to access clean and affordable energy. As a solar company with access to solar home systems, a perfect solution to this problem, we decided to dedicate ourselves to illuminating these homes. Our partners include our customers and companies that have joined forces with us to support and deploy these systems.

Our Achievements:

Across 58 villages, our total solar installations exceed 1,500 houses. Our solar installation teams navigated challenging terrains across four states—Kelantan, Negeri Sembilan, Pahang, and Perak. Overcoming obstacles such as cramped boats, bumpy lanes, and sticky mud, we have successfully illuminated these homes. Our surveys indicate that we have provided safer, cleaner, and more affordable solar energy to over 6,000 Orang Aslis this year alone.

Through these deployments, 51% of recipients have saved at least 50% of their energy costs. Furthermore, they now experience 19 hours of consistent illumination daily. According to our research, this has increased productivity hours from 8 hours a week to a remarkable 48 hours per week.

Apart from alleviating the cost burden, the communities we work with report an improved quality of life. With consistent lighting, they can cook, share meals with family and friends, perform household chores, shower, and study. Parents appreciate the ability to attend to their young children at night with the convenience of a simple switch.

Deploying solar home systems at speed and scale allows us to reach the maximum number of people in the shortest time, enabling these benefits to accrue. However, this is just the beginning, not the end. We are committed to providing deeper electrification through mini-grids to other communities we plan to build relationships with.

By reading this article, you are supporting us with your time and consideration, and for that, we sincerely thank you for being a part of this incredible journey. We hope to connect with you through this mission for the long term.

We Power To Empower - Together.

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