Pay-as-you-go gas provider PayGas has opened its first station in South Africa’s sprawling Soweto township to reach thousands of beneficiaries previously without access to affordable, clean cooking energy.

In a statement, PayGas said this station in Gauteng province was on top of the four in Western Cape already servicing more than 40,000 low-income beneficiaries in the Delft, Nyanga, Philippi and Kayamandi townships.

“Today, an estimated 21 million individuals in South Africa, and 900 million on the African continent are without access to affordable clean cooking,” it said.

“PayGas‘ mission is to offer affordable access to clean cooking energy (LPG), through the implementation of safe and locally managed gas dispensing stations in townships, where consumers can buy only what they can afford, thanks to a proprietary technology that fractions gas purchases into smaller quantities.

It said gas was by far the cleanest, most sustainable option for poor families as it polluted 20 percent less than kerosene, or paraffin, and half as much as coal.

Together with gases and welding products firm Afrox and through a micro franchising with Pick n Pay market stores owners, PayGas said it planned to roll out more than 50 pay-as-you gas stations within the next two years.

“I founded PayGas in response to a gaping need for flexible affordable clean cooking energy for lower income households in urban areas across South Africa and we cannot wait to execute on our ambitious plans to cater to households in more cities in the country and across the continent,” chief executive officer Philippe Hoeblich said.

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