About 1.6 billion people worldwide depend on "fuel-based " because they do not have access to the electric grid, usually burning kerosene for light in different types of lanterns. An amazing 77 billion liters of kerosene are burned every year for , resulting in emissions of 190 Million tons of CO2 yearly. Besides being a very inefficient light source, kerosene is expensive, dangerous and poses a health hazard for its users.
OSRAM has recognized this problem and is providing a viable solution, a perfect example of the fusion between corporate responsibility and sound business addressing the triple bottom line. We are proud to be the first manufacturer in the world to offer a sustainable solution for regions without power supply networks.
The heart of the OSRAM off-grid solution is the energy hub. Its most important function is recharging LED lanterns and battery boxes.
Battery charging services have been available in off-grid areas for some time, but the OSRAM solution offers added value for its customers and the environment. All power for the charged batteries and the other requirements of the O-HUB is delivered by photovoltaic panels. Nearly 10 kW peak power is installed on the present Hubs –providing CO2-free energy.
Efficient lamps or systems using energy-saving compact fluorescent lamps and LEDs are powered by rechargeable batteries.
Customers return the standardized system to the O-HUB and get a freshly charged system in exchange. The customer pays only for the energy, echoing a great advantage of kerosene - light can be bought in small portions according to available income.
The 'deposit' for the system is taken care of with microfinancing.
OSRAM started this pilot in April, 2008 in Mbita, Kenya, around eastern Africa's Lake Victoria, addressing local fishermen and their communities.
Lake Victoria was chosen because the local fishermen fishing for sardines at night use kerosene lanterns. The fishermen spend up to 70% of their income on kerosene, and they saw the enormous benefits to having inexpensive, clean light that wouldn't pollute the Lake. Learn more about the Lake Victoria project.
This off-grid project, now operating in several locations, provides incredible triple-bottom-line benefits.
It improves the social situation of the customers by leaving them with more of their income and reducing hazards to their health
It is a benefit for the environment, because it replaces CO2 emissions from kerosene with clean solar energy.
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