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As noted in the article below, it is estimated that over 600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa do not have access to electricity.  Fortunately, solar is helping to change this.  Even if the solar panel(s) are small and produce only a very small fraction of the energy used by a typical American home, their ability to charge cell phones and power lights is dramatically improving the lives of many people in this area of the world.  You can read more about a particular area in Kenya in this recent article in the Huffington post: