Matthew Wainwright, 33-year-old CEO of Standard Microgrid, has won the 2018 African Youth Energy Innovator Award at the 10th Africa Energy Indaba.
The South African’s innovation focused on power generation for rural communities in Zambia where he resides.
He has developed a community-managed micro-grid utility that enables the deliverable of digital energy services to rural customers.
The 10th Africa Energy Indaba has created a much-needed platform for youth talent in Africa to showcase their important work. The top 5 innovators were chosen during some stringent selection process the past three months.
The other finalists include Tichaona Matte from Zimbabwe with Green Kidney Algae Biofuel and Wastewater Treatment System; Amartei Kisseih, who developed the KISSVAWT, harnessing plastic waste in the build of portable multi-mount Vertical Axis Wind Turbines aiding coastal power generation with sustainability.
John Magiro Wangari from Kenya and his desalination project using Hydro energy and
Glory Esse from Nigeria with her energy efficient PowerStove were also among the finalists.
The African Energy Indaba has shown its support and the importance of giving visibility and awareness to the talented youth of Africa.
“This year has been a great success with major growth since the inaugural Innovator showcase last year. Submissions in 2018 increased by more than 50%, from across Africa,” said Deveena Subramony, Project Manager for the African Youth Energy Innovator Initiative.
“This award provides an important platform for our youth Innovators on the African Continent. It has given each of the Top 5 Innovators an opportunity to be seen by some of the most influential stakeholders in the Energy sector from Africa. This is a priceless opportunity, as many would not have had access to this type of network previously.”
The top 5 innovators, who hail from across the continent, pitched their products to a panel of judges and after a tough Q&A session, the winner of the evening emerged. The event was sponsored by Resolution Circle and the Africa Energy Indaba.
“This Youth Energy Innovator Showcase has been a labour of love, undertaken to bring much needed visibility to the talented youth Africa has to offer,” said Subramony.
The Africa Energy Indaba is the continent’s premiere energy conference where stakeholders and policy makers gather to discuss and explore the possibilities of powering up the continent through the vast natural energy resources available to it.
With strategic partnerships with the World Energy Council (WEC), the South African National Energy Association (SANEA) and the NEPAD Planning & Coordinating Agency (NPCA), the goal is to drive economies across the continent by powering up businesses and ensuring that this major challenge is no longer a hindrance to the exponential growth that the continent is capable of.
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