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Mogadishu a Safer Place Thanks to Solar Powered Street Lights


mogadishu-solar-street-lightsSomalia’s capital, Mogadishu, is now a safer place to live thanks to solar-powered streetlights installed by the British and Norwegian government. The lights, spreading over a length of 15 kilometers, cost $400,000.

After 20 years of conflict, the people of Mogadishu have started to rebuild their lives and the local economy to prosper. If only three years ago, people walking on the streets of Mogadishu at night were either considered crazy or were armed fighters, now kids are playing freely and stores stay open later.

Watch the video below and see how solar power can not only save money and emissions, but also improve essential aspects of people’s lives.


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  1. Don’t for one moment think that street lighting is an example of “green tecnology.” It isn’t. Though I can sympathise with the motivation behind installing it, was any thought given to its environmental impact? Probably not. Are the street lights better that full cut-off, to direct the light where it is needed instead of blasting out in all directions? Probably not. Are the lights motion operated, so they only come on when there is someone around who actually needs the lights? Probably not. Are the lights subject to curfew, switching of automatically at 11p.m. till dawn, during the period when few people are out and about? Probably not. Only if these features are written into the system can you say that it is environmentally friendly.
    Furthermore, don’t think that by installing street lighting you will reduce the crime rate. Just the opposite. Street lighting encourages people to behave at night more as they would during the day. This and similar articles prove that. However, most crime occurs in daylight, ergo criminals need light, consequently, if you extend daylight with street lighting your crime rate will almost certainly go up. One is actually safer under a blanket of darkness. However, if the above guidelines are implemented, security will not be compromised.
    Excessive street lighting is very damaging to the environment, so it should only be installed sparingly, on a needs must basis, where needed, when needed, in the correct amounts, and using appropriate smart street lighting technology. I won’t elaborate further on the environmental effects of street lighting as this is already well established, and a simple web-search will confirm this. It will be sad if Somalia goes the way of the rest of the world.


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