Nobel Prize winner Muhammad Yunus speaking at Dubai's International Off-Grid Lighting Conference

Muhammad Yunus
Muhammad Yunus, winner the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize for his pioneering work in microfinance, will be the keynote speaker for the International Off-Grid Lighting Conference and Exhibition in Dubai from Oct. 26-29. 

The International Off-Grid Conference will focus on creating the best systems to improve solar lighting access using business-driven models.

As the pioneering founder of Grameen Bank and Grameen Shakti, Yunus has plenty of expertise to offer the conference. Following the microfinancing success of Grameen Bank, Yunus founded Grameen Shakti to promote and develop renewable energy technologies in remote, rural areas.

Both of those programs, along with Yunus’ other ventures, have seen transformative changes in rural communities around the world.

The conference will facilitate discussions on the role of policy and regulation in creating the proper environment to improve off-grid solar lighting access across the developing world. Other topics will include efforts to unite business and development goals to create sustainable markets.

Koen Peters, executive director of the Global Off-Grid Lighting Association, said reaching those goals could bring more than a billion people out of energy poverty.

“Aside from the numerous personal and community impacts, solar lighting can bring annual savings of 90 million tons of CO2 and 270,000 ton of black carbon,” Peters said. “These are substantial savings in light of the critical climate challenge the world faces.”

Peters said Yunus will be able to provide key insights into the challenges of developing rural communities, and will provide an inspirational and uplifting keynote for the conference.

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