Our mission is to enable local communities to manage and operate community mini-grid while saving money on maintenance and operational costs, offsetting rural diesel consumption, and serving more households with reliable electricity.
locally-managed diesel mini-grids in Myanmar
The mini-grid market in Myanmar is globally exceptional. These systems are a unique opportunity to better understand and strengthen community-based management models, and represents the potential for more holistic and sustainable energy development. While these diesel mini-grids are an opportunity, they have challenges:
- INEFFICIENT sub-optimal initial design and capacity gap
- EXPENSIVE reliant on diesel and often run at a loss
- LIMITED SERVICE operators can't afford to run year-round
- EMISSIONS lack of financing for cleaner alternatives
Mee Panyar is pioneering a novel community-based business model for operations, maintenance and workforce training for rural mini-grids, starting in Myanmar. Leveraging the country’s existing 13,000 diesel mini-grids as learning tools for rural electricians, Mee Panyar will rehabilitate or hybridize these systems while filling the capacity gap in long-term operations and maintenance (O&M), which has been de-prioritized in recent national energy planning. While some are old and operating at low efficiency, many of these sites can be refurbished to use modern, efficient, reliable equipment for considerably less cost than building greenfield projects.
community-based business model
Mee Panyar will enter into a service agreement with village partners or the private owner of a community's mini-grid to establish the terms of the project, both during the rehabilitation phase and for the lifetime of the system. This service agreement will also specify that village partners continue to hold liability for operational expenses, specified data reporting requirements, and a service fee payable to Mee Panyar in the form of a revenue percentage.
TRAINING PRODUCT & CURRICULUM
Mee Panyar's educational kit will capture lessons from earlier capacity-building and vocational training fieldwork, and training sessions will be adaptive to local knowledge and the technical specifications of each village’s proposed system. This B2B product could be sold to off-grid developers as an all-inclusive training package, bundled with training session hours, enabling them to build O&M capacity in their own projects.
Through the training, technicians will complete system hybridization, alongside Mee Panyar's engineering team. We expect to see and improvement to quality and cost of service through adding solar hybridization. Beyond the benefits of reducing dependence on diesel and lowering carbon emissions, solar hybridization allows for the mini-grid to operate for increased hours of service, spreading demand across the day and supporting productive uses of energy.
Through our participatory education program and apprenticeship model, locally employed operators who manage and maintain the system can perform frequent and preventative maintenance, significantly reducing O&M costs and extending system lifetimes. Mee Panyar's lean approach is designed to address the underlying local capacity deficit and returns control over the system's reliability in the community’s hands.
50% increase in hours of electricity service
Reduced outages increase consumer satisfaction and community buy-in. This also translates to increased productivity and feasibility of productive use.
500% increase in technician income
Electrical technician (or "meesayar") could go from earning max 10,000 Kyat per job, to earning 50,000 Kyat per job through regular frequency work and greater range of potential jobs.
80% decrease in operational costs
Regular preventative maintenance can cover 80% of a diesel system's lifetime maintenance costs for the operator.
The Mee Panyar team is comprised of highly skilled and driven young professionals with extensive experiences across the energy access value chain and a strong commitment to developing and executing community-based approaches.
Please do not hesitate to contact us with questions or comments. For further information on Mee Panyar's approach, download our position paper by completing the form below.