DHAKA, April 11 (Xinhua) -- The World Bank has approved 55 million U.S. dollars to expand use of clean renewable energy in rural areas of Bangladesh where grid electricity cannot reach easily.
This additional financing to the Second Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Development (RERED II) Project will install 1,000 solar irrigation pumps, 30 solar mini-grids, and about 4 million improved cookstoves in rural areas, said the Washington-based lender in a statement received here Wednesday.
The project, including the additional financing, will enable about 10 million people living in villages, shoals, and islands to access electricity and use energy efficient cookstoves.
These interventions will help the country reduce carbon emissions, said the bank.
"We are proud to be helping Bangladesh increase access to clean electricity through solar power. Today, the country has the one of the world's largest domestic solar power programs, covering 14 percent of the population," said Qimiao Fan, World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Nepal.
"Building on its success in using solar energy to provide electricity in rural areas, this financing will also scale up other clean renewable energy options."
The project has already built 10 solar mini-grids in remote areas, including islands and shoals to provide grid quality electricity. This additional financing will help construct another 30 solar mini-grids. These will provide about 28,000 connections to households and businesses, including small and medium-sized enterprises.