Portfolio Learning

Addressing India’s Energy Trilemma with Productive-use DRE

Addressing the energy trilemma of security, affordability and sustainability remains critical for India’s green development. A potential solution could be the use of decentralised renewable energy (DRE) approaches which tend to make use of renewable energy sources, such as biomass and solar.

Shell Foundation portfolio partner S4S Technologies supports women entrepreneurs to convert farm losses to food ingredients via solar dryers, currently processing 25,000 tonnes of food annually and realising a GHG emission saving of around 68,750 tonnes.

Before the introduction of S4S’s electric, solar-powered dehydrating and processing unit, income for smallholder farmers selling vegetables was inconsistent due to market price volatility and a lack of access to premium markets and cold storage. One S4S customer, Anita Kholte, a smallholder farmer from Bhavadi village in Maharashtra used to have to sell her vegetables quickly and at well below market value before they spoiled, earning her an average of INR 40K a year. She also had to throw away unsold produce at the end of the day. By using S4S’s unit, Anita has increased her income by 50% and has been able to significantly reduce the 15% loss of food, due to being able to process the harvest herself and extend the lifetime of the produce.

This report, produced by TripleLine, and commissioned by S4S Technologies and Shell Foundation, with funding from the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) under the Catalysing Agriculture by Scaling Energy Ecosystems (CASEE) programme, compiles insights and learnings from S4S’s work in the renewable energy space to share widely with the larger ecosystem, such as energy investors

Read the report