When I was doing my electricians training in my dim distant youth, prior to later upgrading to Electrical Engineering, the company I worked for had developed some Arc heating which gave off good lighting. But this is a wasting process and a very heavy consumption of power. I do not think it is really an option for lighting under any conditions.
Offered by Darryl.
In general I think carbon arc lighting would be used for extreme emergency only. This is because of the consumables needed and the low efficiency of light production.
Offered by Mike.
Carbon arcs are energy intensive requiring large amounts of current for the light produced. I feel a better use of the battery core carbons would be to produce a high temperature arc furnace for reducing metals for casting. As a low tech approach to melting metals for casting they excel. A couple of carbon rods, a clay pot and electricity are almost all you need to make a pretty good furnace for heating and melting lead, aluminum and other non exotic metals.
Offered by Ray.