Women from the Cooperative for Agricultural Production and Manufacturing in south Lebanon are raising money for a solar system due to constant power outages.
Power cuts this summer ranged between 12 and 16 hours a day, and affected up to 18 hours in remote villages across the country.
The women joined forces to produce staple foods that are distributed to various parts of Lebanon but their machinery heavily relies on electricity.
Environmental organisation Greenpeace has launched a crowdfunding campaign for a solar plant that would reduce the co-op’s dependence on electricity.
Member of the co-op, Daad Ismail, told Global Voices: “We are forced to work manually while our electrical machines are not being used.
“If we had electricity round the clock, we would have a greater production.
“Our work would greatly benefit the women working here as well as the growth of the co-operative.”
Lebanon has faced an energy crisis since the end of the civil war in 1990. Power outages have resulted in a smaller and less diverse production, lower income for the co-op and physically stressful manual activities which require the women to stand daily for long hours.
Lebanon has more than 300 sunny days per year and Greenpeace wants to install a solar energy system on the organisation’s roof. The system has the capacity to fill the electricity supply gap of the co-op and decrease its dependence on inefficient and expensive electricity sources such as private generators.
“We have seen the excitement [as people] realise that this technology is not beyond their reach,” said Greenpeace.
“The successful completion of this project will be how the adoption of solar and renewable resources can contribute to allowing these brave women to take control of their own lives.”