• 1 No Poverty
  • 2 Zero Hunger
  • 3 Good Health and Well-Being
  • 4 Quality Education
  • 5 Gender Equality
  • 6 Clean Water and Sanitation
  • 7 Affordable and Clean Energy
  • 8 Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • 9 Industry Innovation and Infrastructure
  • 10 Reduced Inequalities
  • 11 Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • 12 Responsible Consumption and Production
  • 13 Climate Action
  • 14 Life Below Water
  • 15 Life on Land
  • 16 Peace Justice and Strong Institutions
  • 17 Partnership for the Goals
5 Gender Equality 7 Affordable and Clean Energy 12 Responsible Consumption and Production 17 Partnership for the Goals

“A beautiful nexus between women’s empowerment and energy access.”

Taking energy to the remote parts of rural Pakistan has long seemed an insurmountable challenge. 

But Fiza Farhan defied convention with her “Lighting A Million Lives” campaign, taking solar power into rural villages and changing lives with an innovative combination of technology, finance and idealism.

The project combined micro-financing, sustainable technologies and a co-operative business model that brought multiple benefits: ridding communities of health-threatening kerosene lamps; empowering women; providing employment to both men and women; and promoting the cause of gender equality in communities that, at first, were fiercely resistant.

The project, and her subsequent entrepreneurism, won Fiza a seat on the  National Steering Committee on Climate Change for Pakistan, and the role of Chairperson of Chief Minister Punjab’s Task Force on Women Empowerment. She also represents Pakistan on the United Nations’ High Level Panel on Women Economic Empowerment.

TFI caught up with her at the Asia Clean Energy Forum in Manila, where she told us about the challenges and successes of being a groundbreaking entrepreneur, and how to have a real impact in the developing world.

  • Teymoor Nabili

    Executive Producer/Team Leader at Asian Development Bank (ADB)

  • Fiza Farhan

    Global Strategic Development Advisor / Member - UN HLP on WEE / Member- CM Punjab TF for International Donor Relations