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Clean Energy for Food Security (CE4FS)

Delivering sustainable Cold-Storage for Food Security (CS4FS) services in Off-Grid rural remote areas in the Sub-Sahara is challenging and requires an entirely innovative design to achieve clean energy, food security and economic development. CS4FS has two distinct sections, firstly food security: through the development of economic Off-Grid Cold Storage (OGCS) powered by the solar Micro-Grid System (MGS) in off-grid rural regions, advantageously cool clean air from the Free Air Battery (FAB) supplies the cold store reducing refrigeration load. Secondly providing affordable reliable electricity for community businesses: through the development of solar micro-grid storage (MGS) with novel Free Air Battery (FAB) compressed air energy storage.
CS4FS translates into a proposal to test community led Clean Energy for Food Security (CE4FS) projects in Kenya, engaging with 1,200 small scale farmers (800 women, 400 men with over 50% youth content) in remote rural regions to deliver Micro-Grid storage & off-grid cold store providing post-handling services, to reduce crop waste (currently 40-60%) and promote wealth generation. There are 4 test sites each serving between 200-300 farmers, the service will be paid for through mobile wallet system using Safaricom the largest
  • (CS4FS) is designed to address these challenges by harnessing innovative energy and post-harvest technologies for;
    • Developing off-grid modern energy to increase local capacity thus expanding energy service leading to an increase income levels as well as employment opportunities thus improving social lives and poverty termination.
    • Crop loss prevention & management and food security through off-grid cold storage systems thus to transforming rural agriculture and management processes by involving all stakeholders (farmers, agronomists and local community and authorities) leading to increased productivity and farmer incomes, a reduction of poverty and sustainable development.
  • Specifically, the project will be able to but no limited to:
    • Deliver off-grid cold storage services at lower cost allowing targeted interventions for increasing productivity, profitability and environmental sustainably. For instance, the system will increase crops life shell and protect the crop, maximise yields and enhance the quality of the crops, in the face of unpredictable weather patterns as a result of climate change.
    •  Increase productive use of clean modern energy to increase income levels as well as employment opportunities involvement and participation from all stakeholders (farmers, agronomists, local communities and local authorities).
    • Promotion of adaptation to climate change and developing mitigation mechanisms through use of clean modern energy technologies.
    • Promote productive use of off-grid post-harvest to reduce food/produce loss thus increasing income levels as well as employment opportunities.

Merits of Our Cutting-edge Clean Energy for Cold Storage (CE4CS) Technology

  • Clean Energy for Cold Storage (CE4CS) assembles a consists of a Micro Grid with Storage (MGS) and an Off-Grid Cold Store (OGCS). The MGS part of the system is made up from a solar PV array 20kWp and a Free Air Battery (FAB) 20kW for 10 hours or 200 kWh.
  • The OGCS and MGS are a self standing cold store and micro grid with storage, which is positioned in the remote rural smallholder community to ensure energy and cold store access. The system is charged during the day and has a 10-hour capacity ensuring electricity provision at peak demand throughout the night. There are two outputs from a FAB firstly clean emission free electricity and secondly cool clean air between 2-8’C for refrigeration uses, the cooling stream is fed directly to the OGCS to improve the shelf life of harvested crops, improving food security.
  • The system is emission free, using solar PV to absorb solar energy and using it to compress air before storing the air in gas bottles as potential energy, which captures 99% of the available heat energy. When electricity is required overnight the compressed air is released from the store re-energised with the stored heat before generating electricity through an expander generator. FAB is made from existing mature component parts and cleans the ambient air when in use, with a low environmental footprint.
  • FAB is the most cost effective energy storage at $424.54 per kWh compared to Tesla $735.86, Varta $778.32, Power Vault $1048.60, it has three times the life and cycles of lithium Ion, FAB is designed for harsh high temperature environments with a 25 year life.
  • In summary, the system is accessible, positioned at the point of market need, it is cost effective at $424.54 per kWh, it is emission free and provides a secure supply of electricity & cooling being made from mature technologies, meeting all the requirements of the energy trilemma.
AgroforestryCold storage 1

Our Products and Services

We sell cold storage as a service (CSaaS) and energy as a service (EaaS).
  • We engage with 800 women, 400 men and over 50% youth smallholder farmers, reaching out to stakeholders, community, and elders to understand cultural, gender equality and social impacts on the project’s design innovation and service development. The project embeds mainstreaming through a variety of channels e.g. interviews, orientation workshops, sub-group clusters, eliciting feedback/input from all, to ensure success. Consulting National Government Energy and Agricultural policy makers, local Government; supporting Embu County “Clean Energy & Smart Agriculture” project and NGO’s e.g. ENERGIA, SCODE & SNV Kenya gaining support, adopting best practice, and disseminating information (engagement, empowerment & communication).
  • We expect to pilot 4 community demonstration systems, informing research, knowhow, and the effectiveness of the business model, developing case study & best practice to expand the offer throughout Kenya. This enables the team to penetrate the off-grid storage market reaching 1 billion people in the world without access to electricity.

Clean Energy for Food Security (CE4FS) SDG Goals

  • Clean Energy for Food Security (CE4FS) aligns directly with United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG):
    • Goal 1: No Poverty
    • Goal 2: Zero Hunger
    • Goal 5: Gender Equality
    • Goal 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
    • Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic
    • Growth Goal 9: Industries, innovation & Infrastructure
    • Goal 13: Climate Action
    • Goal 17: Partnerships for the Goals
  • Clean Energy for Food Security (CE4FS) aims to:
    • Deliver off-grid low cost cold storage services increasing productivity, profitability, employment, and environmental sustainability. OGCS will increase crop’s shelf life, maximise yields and enhance crop quality, despite unpredictable weather patterns due to climate change.
    • Increase productive use of clean modern energy to increase income levels and participation from all stakeholders, (farmers, agronomists, local communities, and local authorities).
    • Develop new business models and income, increase research data and information available for ongoing University research, refine a low cost, clean & reliable off-grid electrical supply solution.