The inhabitants of the Rural Municipality of Ambatomanoina and its surroundings exchanged candles and oil lamps to illuminate their homes. New economic activities have developed there, including the manufacture of food ice, the creation of metal and welding workshops, hairdressing salons, pastry shops and food stores.
With a production capacity of 200 kW, the micro hydropower plant is effective since December 2019 and serves the communities of Ambatomanoina.
The dream of 8,500 villagers in this red zone has thus become a reality thanks to the Pico Hydro electricity for Rural Development Project or PHEDER. The initiative was funded by the European Union and implemented from 2012 to 2019 by the Tany MEVA Foundation, in partnership with the Rural Electrification Development Agency (ADER) and the Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme (GEF SGP UNDP).
Located 90 km from the Malagasy capital, in the Anjozorobe district (Analamanga region), Ambatomanoina is sadly known for its high level of insecurity. Zebu thefts and robberies are common currencies; a situation favored by the poverty of the local population and the difficult access to the slopes, especially in rainy periods. Its communities depend mainly on agriculture and livestock.
In order to sustain the micro-power plant, a management committee composed of representatives of the beneficiaries was set up. A PES fund or payment mechanism for Ecosystem services has been introduced, with a 10% contribution on each kWh sold. The local authorities monitor and monitor the proper management of the fund.