Locals in Shimshal have completely adopted solar energy.
When I arrived in Hunza’s Shimshal Valley, I was surprised and delighted to see happy locals dressed in colourful and modern winter attire. What was more amazing were the concrete reinforced houses and satellite dish antennas everywhere. It signalled a makeover that I found difficult to associate with this remote region of Pakistan.
But, what left me absolutely stunned was how the locals have completely adopted solar energy.
Shimshal is nestled deep in Hunza Valley, sharing a border with China’s Xinjiang region. Its biggest claim to fame is that it has produced some of Pakistan’s best mountaineers — Samina Baig, Rajab Shah, Meherban Shah and Rehmatullah Baig.
“There are around 200 houses in Shimshal and every house uses solar panels to generate electricity,” a proud local Shambi Khan told me.
He proudly adds that compared to other people living at a similar altitude — 3,000 metres above sea level in Asia — Shimshal’s residents enjoy a much better quality of life.
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