Switch ON - ONergy

Providing solar energy solutions to rural households
2014 SEED Low Carbon Award; IKI BMU
Clean Energy

Through the establishment of Renewable Energy Centres (REC), the enterprise increases awareness on solar power and sells its own affordable solar energy products like solar micro grids and lanterns. Rural entrepreneurs are trained at the centres to market the products to off-grid village households. Product financing is facilitated through national banks, MFIs and credit co-operatives. 

The enterprise nurtures the development of solar energy products, rural development and the creation of a strong service and after-sales infrastructure. Below-the-poverty-line households are provided with these products free of charge.

Reducing the use of kerosene and firewood as fuel sources will decrease carbon emissions, preserve forest biodiversity and decrease ground water depletion. Solar irrigation can substantially increase farm yields and hence incomes. Families of customers will see a reduction in health care costs and reductions in fuel costs per month.

Eco-Inclusive Impacts
The enterprise improves access to clean energy for 2,500 households, reduce health risks related to traditional fuel use and increase entrepreneurial and direct employment opportunities for rural community members.
  • Increasing access to clean energy for 2,500 households living below the poverty line.
  • Increasing entrepreneurial opportunities for 500 rural community members, including 100 women.
  • Reducing health risks due to decreased use of kerosene as a fuel source. 
  • Reducing three tonnes of carbon dioxide by decreasing fossil fuel use.
  • Preserving biodiversity by reducing dependence on firewood.




  • Creating direct employment for 200 individuals.
  • Increasing farmers’ yields and income by 20-35% through solar irrigation.
  • Reducing health care costs by preventing respiratory illnesses.
  • Fostering income generation between USD 17-200 per month.


Switch ON: ONergy overcomes the obstacle of last-mile distribution of solar-energy products by providing solutions such as solar micro-grids and lanterns to rural communities using a full-service distribution infrastructure based at Renewable Energy Centres. By partnering with national banks, microfinance institutions and credit co-operatives, the enterprise ensures off-grid village households can sustainably finance the products.

Switch ON conducts impact assessments, advocates at the national and state level, raises awareness on renewable energy in the intervention areas, nurtures innovation projects and builds capacity through the training of rural entrepreneurs.

Orissa Tribal Empowerment and Livelihoods Programme seeks to improve the livelihoods of marginalised groups living below the poverty line, like women and tribal communities. It helps to integrate women into the production and distribution of solar products.

World Wildlife Fund India (WWF India) promotes renewable energy solutions in order to mitigate climate change and collaborates with the enterprise to raise awareness about climate change risks in West Bengal and Odisha.