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WWF joins with eBay India to light up Sundarbans

Abhishek Law Kolkata | Updated on March 21, 2015 Published on March 21, 2015

Kolkata: TO GO WITH STORY SENT BY ANANYA DUTTA: The resident at Pakhirala of Sundarbans in West Bengal are still unsafe as the hungry tides are eroding the embankments still after one year of devastating Aila. The nature's fury has made the life tough in these islands. Photo: Arunangsu Roy Chowdhury. May 24, 2010.



WWF- India, along with eBay India, have come together to work on a project that aims to light-up 1,000-odd households in the Sundarbans region.

This is a part of the “India Unplugged – the WWF-India Earth Hour 2015” campaign.

Called ‘Sahasra Jyoti’, the project plans to use solar power to light up the households of 4,000-6,000 odd people living on the island of Satjelia in the Sundarbans.

Satjelia shares around 22-km of its boundary with the Sunderbans Tiger Reserve and has an approximate population of 40,000 people. Nearly 10-15 per cent of the population of Satjelia will be benefited through this Sahasra Jyoti initiative.

According to Himanshu Pandey, Director, Marketing and Communication, WWF-India, micro grid solar power plants in the 12-15-odd hamlets in Satjelia will be installed under the project.

The plan is to set up the grid in such a manner that all households in the hamlets can benefit. The cost of the mini plants and the distribution network works out to around ` 26,000 per household, he said.

“Beneficiaries will get three LED lamps, one fan, one battery and provision to power a 30-watt television set," Pandey said.

The micro solar power grids will be coming up on land donated by the village community or forest department along with a distribution network.

WWF-India hopes to raise ` 2.6 crore for the project over the next six to eight months.

Raising funds

While a part of the funding has already been secured, eBay has stepped in to help raise the funds.

One of the ways is through the online purchase of merchandise on eBay. The e-commerce platform will be retailing a range of special t-shirts; apart from other renewable energy products.

The other way is for eBay customers to make monetary donations between ` 10 and ` 26,000 as an add-on to their regular purchase, proceeds of which will be directed to WWF-India for the Sahasra Jyoti initiative. A special charity auction is also being carried out eBay to raise funds.

“While the first household is likely to be lit up in a year, it will take around two years to power 1,000 homes,” Pandey said.

Published on March 21, 2015
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