Energy scarcity hitting women, children: IWCCI


ISLAMABAD: Islamabad Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IWCCI) on Sunday said energy scarcity is one of the major reasons behind poverty which is affecting women and children the most.

Access to cheap and dependable energy is imperative to transform lives which is not getting attention at policy level, said Samina Fazil, founder President, Islamabad Women’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IWCCI).

She said that tens of millions in Pakistan and 1.3 billion people worldwide are still without any form of electricity while 2.7 billion people still cook over open fires. Samina Fazil said that three billion will cook with traditional fuels and more than 30 million people will die due to smoke-related diseases due to it in next sixteen years.

Those who don’t have access to modern energy around 70 per cent are women who spend significant time and money to obtain energy that is not only unpredictable, expensive, unsafe, and polluting, she said. She said that lack of access to electricity also prevents the development of key social programmes like education, health, sanitation and provision of clean drinking water, continuing a cycle of poverty.

Lack of interest on the part of governments has left a third of the world’s population with no access to modern energy services which is impeding global growth. Government should tame energy crisis and promote new investments as provision of electricity is linked to development of agriculture, industry, trade, jobs, medicine, and water purification.

Every dollar invested in a solar energy generates more than $46 in economic benefits in the first year alone, according to a report.