Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Power Alternative

Jaipur, India

As tropical storm Rita churns into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening to become a Category 4 hurricane, I think about all the problems people are having across the Gulf Coast because they have no access to electric power. If the latest storm slams into Texas or Louisiana as predicted, more people will be without power.

If I was anywhere that could receive a delivered package, I would order a small solar energy generator. In Europe you can buy small ones at the checkout counters in sporting goods stores and in Japan solar chargers are sold at the cash register in internet cafes. Maybe I've just been away too long, but I can't remember ever seeing a solar recharger for sale in a normal store in the US.

Looking on-line, one charger that seems to have a lot of potential is the iSun. One unit can charge mobile phones, PDA's, PDA's etc. and two connected togther are enough to power a laptop computer. Their manufacturer,ICP Solar, produces a range of solar products. Most products they don't sell directly but through their website it's possible to locate local distributors.

Seems like one of the lessons from Katrina regarding disaster preparedness is that you can't depend on one souce of power, especially if charged with the responsibility of providing emergency services. There were too many stories of agencies and people being cut off from communication and help because batteries died...

It's been sunny nearly everyday since the storm passed.


Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

Thank you for thinking ahead, J.

September 20, 2005 11:40 AM  

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