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The Big Shift Global

Working towards clean, renewable energy access worldwide

The Big Shift Global's vision is for all people to have access to clean and affordable renewable energy. We want a world without illnesses from pollution or fear of climate change from carbon emissions.

More than a billion people in the world still don’t even have electricity, let alone clean energy, so there's a long way to go, and we need your help.

Join the global campaign

The World Bank manages and invests huge amounts of public money in development projects. We need them to get all their money out of dirty fossil fuels and into affordable renewable energy to reach and benefit even the most vulnerable and remote communities.

This would have a huge financial impact and set a gold standard that other public and private banks would then aspire to.   

The World Bank agrees that climate change is affecting the poorest people on the planet. Its goal is to end extreme poverty globally within a generation. However, it still supports a lot of projects that contribute to climate change.  

The World Bank needs to put its money where its mouth is.

We are calling for much greater transparency about the impact of their investments in energy on the lives of ordinary women, men and children.

Email the President of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, and ask him to stop funding dirty energy once and for all. By selecting your country of residence below, your email will also be sent to your regional World Bank Executive Director to double your impact.

We have provided editable suggested text for your email below.

Renewable energy success stories

Inspiring stories of small-scale renewable energy initiatives from around the world.

A small, community-owned dam and hydropower plant in Guatemala

Community-run power plant in Guatemala

This small, community-owned dam and hydropower plant provides enough electricity for more than 1,500 people in remote La Taña village, Guatemala.

The power plant produces environmentally-friendly electric power from a renewable source, and is managed by the communities themselves, providing 300 families with access to affordable water and lighting. Their payments are pooled to cover maintenance costs and employ four local electricians to manage the equipment.  

Building a small community-owned hydropower plant proves how indigenous communities and marginalised groups can utilise the natural resources found in their territories. Through this initiative, communities have guaranteed access to a sustainable source of electric power and all the benefits that brings.

A child in Malawi reads in the dark by solar powered light

Solar power in Malawi

In the poorest areas of Malawi, access to electricity is still a challenge. People’s activities are limited to daylight hours. Isaac Chilemba, from a village in Malawi, has become a successful ‘solar entrepreneur’ after an orientation session organised by our partners, Eagles Relief (ECRP) and Solar Aid.

Isaac told us: ‘We were briefed of the benefits and given a chance to buy the solar lights. I realised there is a market for solar power.’ However, it wasn’t easy to get started. ‘I could not even manage to buy a set of two gadgets so I paired with a friend and we shared one each.’

Sales have been building steadily since and he has now sold nearly 100 gadgets. ‘I have managed to buy fertiliser, seed and paid for my field that I am renting,’ he says. ‘We live a better life now because of this business. My wife and I are members of groups where we have access to small loans.’

Photo credit: ECRP/Nicola Milne

Solar scholars learning in a classroom in the Philippines

Building back brighter in the Philippines

Arturo Tahup from the Institute for Climate Change and Sustainable Cities in the Philippines promotes sustainable energy solutions for transportation and development projects such as construction of new housing following disasters. They are working in Tacloban to help ‘build back better, and brighter’.

Arturo told us that ‘the issue of power is a power issue’ with the real barrier to a shift to renewables being centralised grid systems.

Under the Access to Better Energy (ABE) Project with our Philippines partners, Urban Poor Associates and TAO Pilipinas, more than 50 solar scholars successfully graduated from Solar Solutions training. They are now capable of acting as community-based solar technology specialists to provide urgent support in times of disasters and emergencies in vulnerable communities. 

The Big Shift Global FAQs

What is needed for the Big Shift?
  • Phase out fossil fuels
  • Introduce renewable energy and energy efficiency
  • Provide clean energy access.
What do we need to phase out fossil fuels?
  • An end to all subsidies for fossil fuels immediately
  • An end to public finance to fossils fuels, starting with coal, tar sands and fracking
  • The World Bank Group to be transparent about their energy investments and reduce their investments’ carbon footprints.
What do we need to introduce renewable energy and energy efficiency?
  • Increased investment in off-grid energy and new technologies
  • New finance to support every governments’ commitments to tackle the causes and impacts of climate change.
  • Increased energy efficiency in areas of transport and refrigeration.
How do we provide energy to everybody?
  • Greater priority to be given to decentralised and off-grid renewable energy technologies.