Trans-Atlantic Environmental Incorporated (TAE) is dedicated to help provide a better quality of life for those in less fortunate situations throughout the world. Trans-Atlantic Environmental has chosen to begin with Burundi by providing solar lanterns with help from our donors, sponsors, and partners, such as Nokero, to replace the usage of environmentally damaging and potentially unhealthy kerosene lanterns that are common place in several communities in the country. TAE intends to work with other Africa nations to provide this humanitarian assistance.
TAE will be raising funds to provide several communities throughout the country with effective, reliable, and economically viable solar lanterns. In conjunction with other business entities within the host country, TAE will be distributing the lanterns within the communities to ensure the solar lanterns reach their intended destinations.
The goal of TAE is to ensure that communities in need are provided with reliable light sources that work off-the-grid without affecting their health or surrounding environment. We recognize the necessity of communities’ needs for reliable sources of light to improve their lives in many ways. The light from the solar lanterns will allow people in the communities to utilize their time more effectively whether that is studying, crafting, or selling goods as well as having the comfort of light on demand without worry of adverse health effects.
The benefits from this project will help to offset the carbon dioxide emissions from kerosene lanterns. The implementation of these solar lamps will also help to curb the damaging health effects of kerosene on the respiratory systems of those who are in close quarters with the emissions of kerosene lanterns on a daily basis.
Light the World Burundi - Africa
Trans-Atlantic Environmental (TAE) is a non-profit newcomer with a focus on sustainable energy for impoverished countries. We are comprised of like-minded individuals operating with the ethos of ‘ubuntu: Humanity first’. None of our staff is compensated monetarily; we devote our time and energy to solving a global crisis in a cost-effective and attainable way. The members of TAE are as diverse as the communities we seek to serve. The breadth of our collective spans educators, students, civil servants, businesspeople and global volunteers.
At this time, we are concentrating our efforts on the ‘Light the World’ campaign. The immediate desire is to bring solar lamps to roughly 3500 households in Burundi, East Africa. The nationals of Burundi, the 3rd poorest country in the world (United Nation's 2011 Human Development Report) live in an infrastructure providing sporadic electrical power to only 3% of the total population. The remaining 97% rely on the power of the sun in its purest form (and only during daylight hours) to light their daily lives. Once the sun sets, kerosene lanterns and in some cases candles are the only available sources of light. While kerosene lanterns are prolific and serve their purpose, they also bring with them a myriad of problems, including health and environmental issues, both to the local user and the entire earthly ecosystem. The typical family unit owns one or two lanterns, requiring an initial outlay of monetary resources. To fuel the lanterns, each household must continually replenish their supply of kerosene and wicks. When families lack the resources to purchase these basic commodities, which is a common occurrence, the local community is literally in the dark. The financial resources of each family are regularly drained to meet the lighting needs of their familial and communal compounds.
Students needing to complete their homework in the evenings are dependent on these low-light lanterns to brighten their workspace. There may be many students crowded around a common lantern, vying for the ‘best light’. This scenario presents a number of health risks to the students; the low-light of the kerosene lanterns will create eye-strain, and potentially lead to future vision problems. Additionally, being in such close proximity to the burning lantern is ensuring that these students are directly inhaling the heavy, greasy soot and smoke generated from the burning of the kerosene. The burning kerosene has a ripple effect far beyond the lungs of the students in close proximity the pollution created will disperse through the home, to be inhaled by the other inhabitants, both young and old. The pollution is rife with CO2. A single lantern will produce 100kg of CO2 if burned for 4 hours, every day, for the entire year. Multiply that by 3500, the number of homes in the communities targeted in the scope of the Burundi project. That’s assuming that each household only has one lantern, and is only burning it for 4 hours!
And that’s just one community. Looking past just the students, there are many more impacted by the need for light. Just one example would be a village clinic midwife. Babies arrive on no set schedule, their births requiring at minimum, hands and vision to guide their way into the world. The western world dims the lights in birthing rooms to afford a comfortable passage. But what of the areas of the world that are in utter darkness with no electrical infrastructure? Kerosene lanterns are again the means and the way. The midwives, mother, and family members are mostly in the dark, should an infant decide to make an appearance after the sun sets. But the lanterns must be lit. The heat given off along with the cloying black smoke makes it harder for the midwife to concentrate and watch the mother for signs of distress. The mother is breathing in that smoke, as is the new arrival, who comes into this world with a clean set of healthy, pink lungs.
A few lanterns, powered by the rays of the sun, could clear this delivery room of pollution. They could give the midwife a clean and clear view to handle what Mother Nature (and the mother of the impending arrival) could provide in terms of complications. A few dollars per lantern, fueled by the freely available sunlight during the day, could provide a measurably different welcome into this, OUR world, for that new human being. Ubuntu!!
Our goals are simple, with a meaningful effect.
Measurable results: The math is simple. It’s easy to see, even without knowing the fair market value of a pint of kerosene on the local market. The lowered carbon emission load on the ‘rest’ of the world is easily quantifiable. What isn’t, is the actual benefit derived by those in close proximity. This equation appeals to those who are number-oriented as well as those with softer, more humanitarian concerns. It simply makes sense.
Replication: Raise money to provide solar lanterns to 3500 poor families in Burundi. Raise money to provide solar lanterns to any electrically and financially bereft community, in any location in the world. This is an easy copy-exact methodology to conquer.
Sustainability: Once the lanterns are donated, only the desire to recharge them in the ubiquitous sunlight is a barrier. There are no complex parts to break down. There are no physical community infrastructure issues to contend with. Should the lantern break? A new one could be acquired. Perhaps the money saved on weekly kerosene and wick propane fills could be utilized to purchase further solar lanterns by each household.
We at TAE envision a partnership with you in our Light the World Campaign. Our goals are easily accessible, by furthering the relationship, we can together further the resilience of our global system. The relationship would assist this foundling enterprise in gaining visibility, support and confidence from other potential partners. Your donations and contributions would directly correlate to a tangible number of lanterns/brightened households around the world and put TAE that much closer to actually "Lighting the World".
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