Solar Lights for Burma

by Solar Roots


This project replaces candles with Solar lights in the poorest rural communities and schools in Burma.
total goal
monthly donor
years active


Many low-income remote communities in Burma use candles as their only source of light after the sun goes down. Candles are expensive and can cause burns or fires. They are made from paraffin, a petroleum by-product, (fossil fuel). Our first focus is on individual householders in the Ayerwaddy Delta area, which was devastated by Cyclone Nargis in 2008. Our second focus is on rural Buddhist monastic schools which have no access to electricity.


By supplying communities with ultra-efficient LED lights, rechargeable batteries and solar panels, the Solar Roots project increases the amount and duration of light available and safety in the home and schools, and reduces monthly costs. A final benefit is that energy production is being shifted from fossil fuels to a renewable source.

Long-Term Impact

Our candle-replacement project targets both individual homes and monastic schools. The project will allow children to study at night and women to cook safely after dark. Long term employment will be created for the Burmese manufacturer of the LED lamps. Each cooperative of 12 or 24 homeowners will support the small enterprise of the person selected to take care of the community battery charging. The project is being carried out in co-operation with a local micro-lending/saving group.


Blog Page describes our work in the last 5 years

Organization Information

Solar Roots

Location: Berkeley, CA - USA
Project Leader:
Bruce Gardiner
Berkeley, CA United States