ACCIONA's corporate foundation, previously known as the ACCIONA Microenergy Foundation, has rebranded as acciona.org. This name change signals a new era for the foundation, during which, with the tagline “The Energy & Water Foundation”, it will focus on contributing to universal access to basic services linked to ACCIONA's activities: renewable energy, water, sanitation and sustainable infrastructure.
acciona.org will continue to develop rural electrification projects in remote areas using renewable energies — as the ACCIONA Microenergy Foundation has been doing since 2008 — while at the same time adding water potabilisation, sewage treatment and sanitation projects in communities that have no prospect of being able to access such services.
To this end, acciona.org will continue to ensure that its programmes are economically self-sustainable under the social micro-enterprise model, involving both local communities and international cooperation institutions.
In this new era, acciona.org will intensify the involvement of corporate volunteers from ACCIONA, tapping into the know-how of the company's employees who volunteer to design solutions to provide clean drinking water, sanitation, water treatment, energy and other services.
acciona.org, has already launched the EncASa Oaxaca programme, its first integrated programme to provide basic water, sanitation, energy and safe cookers.
The foundation teamed up with the Oaxaca state government and the national development agencies of Spain (AECID) and Mexico (AMEXCID) to provide these basic services to rural communities in the Mexican state of Oaxaca. For this purpose, the foundation is developing technically and economically sustainable systems that are adapted to the relief, climate and customs of the rural communities in the state of Oaxaca.
These models will be first tested in a pilot project that will provide electricity, access to drinking water, sanitation and safe cookers to more than 50 families in towns with fewer than 500 inhabitants, and will bring electricity to another 1,000 households. These services will be provided on an individual or community basis, depending on recipients' needs.
In this way, acciona.org becomes ACCIONA's vehicle to channel its cooperation initiatives aimed at providing basic services to underprivileged communities, in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
There are 1,000 million people in the world today without electricity, 600 million without access to drinking water, 2,000 million people with no sanitation infrastructure, and 3,000 million people using unsafe cooking methods.
This lack of basic services causes health problems, such as diarrhoea from drinking contaminated water and respiratory and eye diseases from the smoke generated by unsafe lighting and cooking methods. Drinking contaminated water causes almost 2 million deaths by diarrhoeal disease each year. Burning materials such as charcoal, animal dung, kerosene or firewood for lighting, heating and cooking without proper ventilation causes more than 4 million deaths each year.
Since 2008, acciona.org — previously the ACCIONA Microenergy Foundation — has brought electricity to around 50,000 people in rural areas of Mexico and Peru by using household photovoltaic systems to provide a basic electricity service that very low income users can afford.
In the Cajamarca region of Peru, the foundation provides electricity to almost 4,000 households, as well as to community centres (schools, churches, health centres and other venues for community services). Also in Peru, the foundation is implementing the Luz en Casa Amazonia programme, providing electricity for the first time to approximately 1,000 households in the Peruvian basin of the Napo river, a tributary of the Amazon; the model will subsequently be replicated in other river basins in the region.
In Mexico it has implemented the Luz en Casa Oaxaca home electricity project, bringing electricity to more than 7,500 families.
acciona.org is also involved in other initiatives, such as the Shire project to provide electricity to refugee camps in Ethiopia.