For centuries, water pumping, food processing, and manufacturing , amongst other productive uses, have been enhanced by the application of mechanical power. Recent technological advances in mechanical power have further enhanced productivity and reduced the drudgery of human labour associated with these tasks. However, in spite of the undoubted importance of mechanical power in meeting every day energy needs at a local level, it is generally under-appreciated to the point that there is an almost complete lack of official data and documentation of its role. Expanding Energy Access in Developing Countries surveys the variety of mechanical power applications and options available, and argues that they should be given more consideration by policy makers and practitioners responsible for improving energy access for poor communities worldwide. This publication will be of interest to anyone seeking an overview of mechanical power and its use in pro-poor development work and should be required reading for programme planners at national and local level.