Crowdfunding Efficient Lighting Options for the Developing World


As we’ve pointed out before, clean, reliable lighting is essential for development… and many parts of the world don’t have the basic infrastructure necessary to provide the kind of lighting we take for granted. Typically, residents of the developing world have relied upon kerosene lamps for lighting, but there’s a trade-off here: emissions from burning kerosene aren’t particularly healthy. But that’s the risk you’ve got to take if you live far away from the electric grid… right?

Not any more – social entrepreneurs around the world have recognized the need for lighting in the world’s poorest regions, and responded with all sorts of ideas that don’t require an electric grid. This week, I came across two more with active crowdfunding campaigns… and, clearly, these concepts resonate with people, as neither has to worry about not meeting their funding goal. Contribute if you’d like – I’m sure they can put the money to good use – but no need to feel guilty if you just want to check out these two projects.

Efficient Lighting Concept #1: The GravityLight

This is an old concept that provides a perfect answer to the need for lighting in the developing world: no electricity required at all! GravityLight’s pitch video explains it all:

h/t to Shea Gunther for sharing this one on Facebook.

Efficient Lighting Concept #2: the WakaWaka Power Station

WakaWaka‘s solar LED light was a big hit on Kickstarter; now the company is improving on its initial concept with a solar powered light and battery charger. WakaWaka’s made a name for the efficiency of its products: a little charging goes a loonngg ways, apparently. And the company also operates on a TOMS-like “buy one -give one” model, with the second light going to Haiti. Check out their pitch on the new project (which is nearly funded):

As I mentioned before, there are lots of cool lighting projects like this out there: Beth Buczynski at Care2 highlighted a few more this morning (though, honest, I had this idea before I read her post!). Know of others? Share them with us in the comments…

Image credit: GravityLight at Indiegogo

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