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Seeing the Impact of Electricity in India

A new web map allows for an interactive view of the impact of electricity in India. The spread of electricity in India has been an ongoing objective for more than 20 years, however, there are still more than 310 million people in mostly rural areas that still don’t have electricity in their homes.

The Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikara Youani (RGGVY) national program to spread electricity in the country launched in 2005. The RGGVY program has four main focuses: construction of a rural electricity distribution backbone, electrification of villages that have more than 100 people, creating distributed generation networks in areas where connecting to the grid is cost prohibitive, and providing free power connections to households below the poverty line.

Using satellite imagery of light output from villages at night, University of Michigan researchers explored light output of 600,000 villages. The light at night make up 4.4 billion data points that help RGGVY and other stakeholders with verification of the spread of electricity over a 20-year timeframe.

Explore the online map here