Across Latin America the impact of poverty and climate change is bringing greater stress to rural communities.
In arid northern Argentina, people have only one source of fuel – wood. It is often scrawny bushes that are increasingly hard to find.
But the region also has a huge untapped resource – solar radiation – and Virginia Bauso’s mission is to harness its potential and promote solar energy as the main power source for entire villages: from kitchens and ovens to heating, lighting, hot water and even a public phone.
She roams the desert spreading innovative technology, including a “kiosk” she invented that cooks food using the sun’s rays. The community of Misa Rumi is now almost 100 percent solar-functional. Another village recently built a solar quinoa dryer, creating new opportunities for employment.