Humanitarian Energy PLC (HumEn) Acquires Ethiopia's First Commercial Mini-grid License to Serve Refugee and Host Communities in Sheder, Somali Regional State

December 21, 2022

The Ethiopia Petroleum and Energy Authority (PEA) has granted the country's first commercial mini-grid license under its new mini-grid directive to Humanitarian Energy PLC (HumEn), an Ethiopian private limited company founded by Mercy Corps, Rensys Engineering and Trading PLC to provide sustainable energy as a service to refugee and host communities, as well as humanitarian agencies and operations in Ethiopia. The license will allow HumEn to deploy and commercially operate a 253 kWp solar PV mini-grid to service the refugee and host communities of Sheder town in Ethiopia's Somali Regional State. 

The solar PV mini-grid license has unlocked the possibility for refugees and host communities to access reliable, continuous, affordable, and sustainable electricity services. This marks a key milestone for Ethiopia's mini-grid and humanitarian sectors, which will continue to support Ethiopia’s National Electrification Plan 2.0 as well as the country efforts towards the increasing integration of displaced people in its social fabric.

“This license is a significant milestone toward delivering sustainable energy-as-a-service to refugee and host communities, humanitarian agencies and activities in Ethiopia. It underpins our Enter Energy Ethiopia programme which aims to create a replicable, market-based model to provide clean energy services in humanitarian settings," said Cecilia Ragazzi, Mercy Corps' Director of Energy Access.

Ethiopia is home to an estimated 4.7 million forcibly displaced persons (FDPs), yet only 7% of these people have access to energy. We believe that the need to support communities in achieving better access to cleaner, more affordable and sustainable energy sources has never been more urgent than it is now. HumEn is committed to finding new ideas and ways to work together to provide clean, long-lasting energy services in the Somali region of Ethiopia and across the country.

Notes to the Editor
About Humanitarian Energy PLC (HumEn) 
HumEn is an Ethiopian private limited business that aspires to be the humanitarian sector's preferred partner in the hunt for clean and sustainable energy services, in Ethiopia and beyond. Through the support of its shareholders, the iNGO Mercy Corps and Rensys Engineering and Trading PLC, HumEn provides sustainable energy-as-a-service to refugee and host communities, as well as humanitarian agencies and operations of Ethiopia.

About the Petroleum and Energy Authority (PEA)
The Petroleum and Energy Authority acts as the regulator for Ethiopia's petroleum and energy sector. It acts under the aegis of the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum (MoMP). Among its various mandates, PEA is in charge of reviewing, processing and issuing mini-grid licenses for mini-grid operators in Ethiopia. 

About Mercy Corps 
Mercy Corps is a global team of over 5,400 humanitarians working to create a world where everyone can prosper. In more than 40 countries affected by crisis, disaster, poverty and climate change we work alongside communities, local governments, forward-thinking corporations and social entrepreneurs to meet urgent needs and develop long-term solutions to make lasting change possible. Mercy Corps has a total operating budget of over $550M and last year reached over 50 million people.