Consumer Campaign for Quality-Assured Solar Lighting in Rural India Launched

Consumer awareness and education session © Lighting Asia-India
Consumer awareness and education session © Lighting Asia-India
IFC’s Lighting Asia/India program that aims to provide safe, affordable, and high quality solar lights to people with limited or no access to electricity has launched Suryodaya™ – a consumer education campaign to increase the awareness of quality assured solar lighting products in rural India.
Suryoday™ campaign has been launched in Bihar, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh and will run in a phased manner through June 2015 and is expected to reach up to 8,000 villages and create demand for quality solar lighting products.
The program is partnering with manufacturing companies (Barefoot Power, d.light Energy, ECCO Electronics, Greenlight Planet, Omnivoltaic, Orb Energy and SUNLITE) and product distribution companies (Frontier markets, Dharma Life, Mahindra EPC and TOTAL Oil India Pvt Ltd) in this effort.
“Despite the huge population living without adequate electricity access in India, the solar lighting market today remains nascent with penetration well below five percent,” said Anjali Garg, Program Manager Lighting Asia/India program. “We are working on a series of interventions with manufacturers and distributors of solar lighting products to enable consumers to have access to high quality solar lights.”
All the products being promoted under the campaign have passed an independent three-month quality assurance testing process based on the IFC-World Bank Lighting Global Quality Standards, which were in April 2013 adopted by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), the world’s leading organization that prepares and publishes International Standards for all electrical, electronic, and related technologies.
Nearly 380 million people in India depend on kerosene for their primary source of lighting. Not only is the light from kerosene lamps inadequate, it is polluting. Providing this vast population with improved lighting can have significant impacts on health, incomes, education and the environment.
The Lighting Asia – India program is working to build a market for high quality solar appliances through a multi-faceted approach: working with manufacturers of solar lighting products to test their products, supporting distributors to penetrate untapped markets, and engaging with consumers through the Suryodaya™ consumer awareness campaign to generate awareness and demand.
IFC’s lighting program in India is supported by the government of United States, Italy, Austria, and Australia.
IFC is implementing similar programs in various geographies under the Lighting Africa, Lighting Pacific, Lighting Asia, and Lighting Global regional programs.