Panasonic aims to donate 100 thousand solar lanterns to remote regions that have no access to power supply. The “100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project” has passed its halfway mark as Panasonic has donated the 50,000th lantern on March 10, 2016.
Starting from Myanmar, the project was launched in February 2013 with 3,000 units of solar lanterns. Panasonic has cumulatively donated 10,000 solar lanterns in 2013, 14,114 in 2014 and 20,364 in 2015. On March 10 2016, Panasonic donated 702 units of solar lanterns to Vietnam, and the sum total of solar lantern donations exceed 50,000.
The "100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project" is one of Panasonic's corporate citizenship activities (social contribution activities) that utilize "products" it manufactures. According to IEA’s data, more than 1.2 billion people worldwide still live without access to electricity. Lack of electric lighting severely impacts health, education, income-generation and safety at nighttime. Panasonic hopes to help alleviate the social challenges people in developing and emerging countries living off-grid are facing, and to bring positive change to their lives by donating small lighting devices powered by solar energy. Panasonic has also donated solar lanterns to give relief to communities stricken by large-scale natural disasters or by epidemics.
For the donation plan in 2016, Panasonic donated 2,400 units to Cambodia and 760 units to Bangladesh in mid-March. Furthermore, donations to Indonesia, India, and the Democratic Republic of Congo will be made by the end of March 2016, bringing the sum total to more than 60,000 units.
Panasonic aims to donate 100,000 solar lanterns under this project by 2018, the 100th anniversary of the company's founding. In principle, recipients are non-profit, non-governmental, humanitarian and international organizations.