Wind Empowerment Athens 2014

Please support our friends at WindEmpowerment in crowdfunding an event to raise awareness on energy resilience at the local level. Their self-manufactured wind turbines are a good example of open source local manufacturing embedded within a global commons approach. The following text is copied from their crowdfunding campaign page.

Support locally manufactured small wind turbines and the electrification of rural communities

Wind Empowerment Athens 2014

While everyone is talking about renewable energy, power generation from small wind turbines is not thriving. The issues that are usually raised have to do with quality, reliability, and the cost of installation. However, self-constructed wind turbine projects are one sector of wind energy that is thriving. 

Self-constructed wind turbines offer a real alternative, as they enable local people to build and maintain the technology, which makes all the difference.

Today, 1.4 billion people worldwide have no access to electricity. Nowadays it is a right.

Small wind turbines offer viable and sustainable means for remote communities to manage their own local resources and lift themselves out of poverty.

Wind Empowerment is an association that is active in the development of small, self-constructed wind turbines, originally designed by Hugh Piggott, to enable rural electrification.

Wind Empowerment is composed of 37 organizations in 28 different countries. We have a diverse membership: members include manufacturers of small wind turbines, associations, NGOs, universities, social enterprises, cooperatives, test sites, and 1,146 individuals.

Wind Empowerment is a platform for the exchange of knowledge and know-how that connects all members and participants. Everyone can share their experiences on what works or not in the context in which the technology is applied, on technical advances and other information, helping to make small wind turbines a more accessible technology that is sufficiently viable to provide an answer to the problem of rural electrification.

The association was created in 2011 following a meeting of several organizations grouped around the theme of self-constructed wind turbines at the World Social Forum in Dakar, Senegal.

Since that time, its members and participants, continuously evolving, have mainly communicated through our website

Our Executive Committee meets regularly via the Internet and we have used different means of digital communication for sharing information and documents such as webinars, virtual libraries, videos, and discussion forums.

However, this type of communication has its limits, which is why we are organizing a second conference this Autumn from November 3rd to 7th, 2014. This conference will be in the same vein as the meetings in Dakar in 2011.

The event will take place at the National Technical University of Athens, Greece, where the Rural Electrification Research Group of NTUA has provided access to lecture halls, classrooms and spaces for various workshops, as well as basic and free accommodation provided by the Nea Guinea organization.

The program for the week will include:

– presentations of research work and of each member organization’s activities;

– demonstrations and experiments in wind tunnels and generator test benches;

– practical workshops, including new manufacturing techniques and data acquisition systems;

– field trips to the small wind test site of NTUA in Rafina (30 min from Athens) and of wind turbines in Marathonas (45 min from Athens);

– feedback from members on what works / does not work and why – both in terms of hardware, and also on a human level.

What is the funding for?

We seek financial assistance primarily to contribute towards the travel expenses of our members coming from all continents, especially those from developing countries who cannot join us without a subsidy. These include members from AJA Mali, Craftskills East Africa (Kenya), Energizar (Argentina), KAPEG (Nepal), Kartong project (Gambia), MinVayu (India), ÉolSénégal (Senegal), among others.

Thank you for supporting Wind Empowerment!

Read the full funding proposal:

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