Grey Green EcoContainer
Winner: Community Renewable Energy Innovations
Bring together engineering consultants and project managers who specialise in delivering sustainable energy solutions, and you’re sure to get innovative answers to habitual problems.
Grey Green, a young Cape Town company made up of mechanical, electrical, chemical, civil and computer engineers, offers customised, innovative, turnkey renewable energy and energy efficient solutions.
“Our reason for existing is to harness our skills and experience to develop projects with strong value propositions for clients who utilise sustainable energy,” says director Nishen Brijraj. “We want to provide energy that is accessible, cleaner and more efficient in order to conserve our natural resources and preserve the environment, while promoting socio-economic development.”
Made from refurbished shipping containers, the EcoContainer is a fully modular, off-grid, solar PV (photovoltaic) creation. It can be customised into four solutions that address Africa’s most urgent educational, healthcare, social and environmental needs.
EcoClass is a classroom or computer lab for schools; EcoClinic, a healthcare facility to provide basic medical assistance, particularly for HIV and TB; EcoChef, a kitchen facility used during disaster relief; and EcoWash, a bathroom that has showers or a laundry facility.
It takes four to six weeks to complete each container and once at its destination, two people need only basic tools to get the sun-powered system operational in one day.
To date, 11 off-grid solar computer lab solutions are in the field, and the search is on for further funding through nongovernmental organisation partners to provide more EcoContainers for deserving communities.