US vs Ghana shows why Africa needs power

Ghanaians watch the Black Stars play in the FIFA World Cup 2010 in Ghana at a local bar. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Ghanaians watch the Black Stars play in the FIFA World Cup 2010 in Ghana at a local bar.
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Ghanaians watch the Black Stars play in the FIFA World Cup 2010 in Ghana at a local bar.
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons. 

Something to keep in mind when you watch the World Cup match between the US and Ghana: “The average refrigerator in the United States consumes more electricity each year than the average person in Ghana.”

That amazing stat comes from Todd Moss at the Center for Global Development. And it’s relevant to the game. Zach Seward at Quartz reports that because of the dire power situation in Ghana, the West African country has to ration electricity.

“The most pressing concern for American soccer fans may be how to find the game online. In Ghana, the issue is whether there will be enough electricity to power everyone’s televisions,” says Seward.

It’s a “stark reminder that access to electricity is a hugely pressing concern throughout Africa,” says Brad Plumer at Vox.

This is a big deal and it’s more than just whether someone gets to watch the game. In sub-Saharan Africa, 7 out of 10 people don’t have access to electricity. Moms give birth in the dark. Families can’t refrigerate food, and kids can’t study.

You can help. A bill has been introduced in the US Congress that will bring electricity to 50 million people in Africa for the first time – at no cost to the US taxpayer. It’s passed in the House of Representatives, and we hope the Senate will be next to act.

Take action – Sign our petition now and tell Congress to electrify Africa!

No one should have to live in energy poverty. We have the power to light up the future.