Build “Solar-Powered Communication Charging Stations” in the most remote communities in Puerto Rico. A significant impediment to the recovery effort is an inability to communicate and coordinate. These stations will provide each rural community a location to gather and charge their cells and computers. In partnership with the Dawood Global Foundation - “Educate A Girl” project we will be training local girls on solar technology and installation at each location, and leaving them in charge of the Communication Stations.
Background and Project
We are a Native American owned solar installation company, Now!Solar ( http://www.nowsolar.co/ and indoor farm company, 7 Generations, ( http://www.7generations.net/ ). We want to help Puerto Rico recover, but we wanted to know exactly where our contribution was going. One thing we know how to do is solar and indoor farms. There are efforts to rebuild the grid, but it will be months if not years. But we can build small things that will have a big impact now!
Phase I – “Solar-Powered Communication Charging Stations” ($10,000-20,000 raised)
A significant impediment to the recovery effort is the inability to communicate and coordinate. These stations will provide each community a location to gather and charge their cell phones. Now!Solar CEO, Eugene Wilkie, will personally travel to Puerto Rico to oversee each installation. Subject to change as needs and resources change, our focus will first be on these smaller rural communities:
10. Las Marias
15. San German
16. San Sabastian
Costs: We estimate each communications station will cost approximately $750-1,000. This includes approximately $600-650 for the electrical supplies (3 solar panels, batteries, power strips, electronics, platform, concrete), approximately $100 for the battery, approximately $100 shipping/transportation (we are working on obtaining shipping on a recovery cargo plane at a reduced rate), and approximately $100 for local labor assistance. We are working on reducing costs by getting our solar panels and batteries at costs. We are budgeting $2,000 for transportation and food. Now!Solar is donating its staff time and expertise. We estimate approximately 3 weeks of our staff on the ground for installation. We plan on installing in early December 2017.
Phase II – “Solar-Powered Elder Air-Conditioning Stations” ($20,000-60,000 raised)
Another significant concern is the fatal effect of the heat on the elders in the communities. The amount of energy (solar panels/batteries) to run an air-conditioner is significantly more than to supply a Communications Charging Station. If we raise $40,000 more than the initial $20,000 (for the Communication Charging Stations) then we will install separate larger solar stations sufficient to power an air-conditioner/electricity at one communal venue appropriate for each community, where the elders can seek refuge from the heat of the day.
Phase III – “Solar Powered Indoor Vegetable Farm” ($250,000+ raised)
Long term, Puerto Rico will struggle to reinvigorate its agricultural sector, and the cost of imported foods will price many out of the healthy fresh produce market. At Now!Solar/7 Generations we build sustainable indoor vegetable farms. Our hydroponic solar-powered farms use 90% less water than traditional farming, and produce 18 annual cycles of fresh vegetables.
Who We Are
Eugene Wilkie (Turtle Mountain Tribe) is the CEO and Founder of Now!Solar. Eugene has been in the solar industry for nearly 30 years. Much of his career was spent in South America building off-grid systems in some of the most remote regions in the world. He has spent a great deal of time in Puerto Rico, and is also fluent in Spanish.
Heather Dawn Thompson (Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe), is a nationally acclaimed Indian law attorney, a renewable energy advocate, and a business partner in 7 Generations our indoor farm company.
First identified locations.
A sample of charging stations.
Indoor Garden System
Devastation in Puerto Rico
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