18 Oct 2017

Hollywood star helps bring solar power to rural Fiji

10:14 am on 18 October 2017

A Hollywood actor is trying to help Fijian villages generate solar power.

Leonardo DiCaprio poses on arrival for the BAFTA British Academy Film Awards at the Royal Opera House in London on February 14, 2016.

Leonardo DiCaprio Photo: AFP

The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation is working with local agencies and authorities to bring solar power to rural communities without electricity, or that rely on diesel generators.

The foundation will provide a grant as seed funding to electrify the villages of Vio and Nacula, the first two communities taking part in the pilot phase of the programme.

It will then help mobilise funding for additional villages.

Once a sufficient number of communities have solar power, the foundation said revenues from electricity sales would be used to finance solar power generators in other villages, creating a self-funding system that will expand the programme throughout rural Fiji.

The foundation's chief executive Terry Tamminen said: "Island nations are on the front lines of climate change, and with Fiji's leadership we can demonstrate how practical renewable energy solutions can improve lives and increase resiliency at the same time".

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