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Solio picks a fight with throwaway batteries this Earth Month

The Bay Area brand is on a mission to help consumers cut ties with a toxic, landfill-bound product.

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Solio, the decade-old leader in the hand-held battery packs and solar charger category originator, has a fight to pick this Earth Month. The Bay Area brand is on a mission to help people save money and cut ties with a toxic product that is landfill-bound at the end of its short lifespan. Nearly every household has a drawer or box of dead single-use batteries and despite their seemingly small footprint, throwaways represent a significant financial investment with an extremely small return.

Single-use batteries are a uniquely developed-world “luxury,” while kerosene and paraffin continue to be the top energy choices for lighting in emerging markets. North Americans have long romanticized products like the gas-guzzling Coleman lantern, yet white gas represents one of the most dangerous and expensive camping lighting options available.

Because Solio operates a solar-as-service business in rural Kenya in partnership with local “energy entrepreneurs” the company has first-hand knowledge of just how much money people at the base of the economic pyramid waste on low-quality energy solutions. Lighting Up Africa estimates that $10.5 billion is spent annually on fossil fuel-based lighting such as kerosene and paraffin candles in Sub-Saharan Africa alone.

Solio’s answer to this conundrum is a product range that offers an alternative to expensive, toxic, and dangerous energy options. Its two most popular products, the Solio BOLT ($70) and the CLIP-MINI ($35), capture and store energy from the sun with monocrystalline solar panels or may be USB recharged when the sun goes down.

The BOLT is a compact solar charger and battery pack. Its on-board battery and rotating solar panels allow the BOLT to charge the multitude of popular USB-powered devices we rely on daily, even boasting optimized charging for Apple products as well as unique battery chemistry that enables efficient energy capture during the high temperatures of solar charging.

Solio’s newest lighting release, the CLIP-MINI, allows users to harness the clean energy of the sun (or, optionally, a USB wall plug when the sun goes down), to keep light burning all through the night without consuming environmentally hazardous and wasteful disposable batteries or fuel.

Consumers can easily replace the ubiquitous AA and AAA battery at home and away with the Solio solar battery pack to charge common electronics like headlamps for camping, LED lights for cycling, and digital cameras. At airports where wall outlets are scarce, a backup battery pack gives a boost to essentials like smartphones, game players, or the estimated 3 million new iPads Apple just released.

In the company’s business in rural Kenya, replacing kerosene lighting with solar energy saves customers $3 on a $10 weekly household budget while also providing low cost and convenient options for getting news, information, and sports from USB-powered FM radios and for charging cell phones without walking several hours to electrical power.

Solio products can be researched and purchased on

About Solio
Solio is a developer and manufacturer of portable solar chargers and lighting systems, helping power work and play with renewable energy. Solio products are compatible with an enormous range of devices from GPS units to MP3 players, smartphones, and cameras. Chances are, if a device can be powered by USB, it can be powered by Solio. Now a decade old, Solio is an Oakland, CA-based company distributed by Liberty Mountain and sold through specialty retailers like REI, Sprint, RadioShack. The company also provides rural communities in Kenya with home solar lease options, providing access to affordable clean energy and lighting systems. For more information visit

Solio stands for energy equality
Through Kiva microfinance loans, solar energy entrepreneurs are able to start a green energy business of their own. Solio is a proud partner of Kiva – find out more here:

Tested by daily use
Families in Kenya use Solio to power their entire home. We’ve learned to make durable, reliable solar chargers – because people depend on us! Learn more here: