Four companies announce new ventures to promote clean energy and help save the environment

28 Nov 2011

New York, Durban—More than 12 million low-income people in Africa, Asia, and Latin America will gain access to clean energy following four companies’ commitments made today to the Business Call to Action, a global leadership initiative that promotes sustainable economic and social development. The companies also expect to create approximately 42,000 environmentally sustainable job opportunities by 2016.

The pledges that range from expanding clean energy in more than 40 developing countries to promoting sustainable use of Amazon Rainforest fruits were made at the start of the 2011 United Nations Climate Change Convention in Durban, South Africa.

“Clean energy access is essential to building a healthier and more prosperous world.  We need to come together to find bold and bankable solutions that protect our planet and promote the welfare of all people. We need CEOs, investors, utility companies and renewable energy businesses,” said Business Call to Action Acting Programme Manager Amanda Gardiner. “These pledges show the private sector’s growing commitment to address such challenges by promoting alternative solutions to traditional infrastructure and boosting environmentally sustainable jobs.”

United States-based juice company Sambazon committed to train 7,000 açaí-berry harvesters in the Brazilian Amazon Rainforest on organic, non-invasive harvesting principles and environmental management principles.  In addition to doubling current yields of the Amazon berry and increasing harvesters’ earnings by 40 percent by 2016, the initiative is expected to preserve over 1.2 million hectares of forestland.

Around 20 percent of the world’s population lacks basic access to energy and nearly three billion people use dirty fuels such as kerosene, firewood, and coal, which kill nearly two million people every year.

d.light, a solar-powered LED lighting manufacturer, committed to expand production and distribution to six million households which normally rely on kerosene lanterns – an inefficient, polluting, unhealthy, expensive and unsafe source of energy – in more than 40 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean by 2015. By providing access to safe, eco-friendly and affordable renewable light and energy, d.light’s solar-powered lamps will help reduce carbon dioxide emissions, according to the company which has offices in Africa, Asia and the United States.   

This year the UN Secretary General launched the Sustainable Energy for All Initiative, highlighting the importance of extending clean energy coverage in order to combat endemic poverty. In recognition of the importance of energy access for sustainable development the UN General Assembly designated 2012 as the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All.

Contact Information


BCtA: Lorin Kavanaugh-Ulku, lorin@businesscalltoaction.org, Tel:  +1 703-587-3219
d.light: Kristina Skierka, kristina@dlightdesign.com
Oanda: Adeyemi Oreagba, aoreagba@oandoplc.com
Sambazon: Kaia Lai, kaia@sambazon.com
SolarNow: Willem Nolens, willem@solarnow.eu