Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Big Stuff

The solar power project (more coming on that topic) and the energy it represents is one of the big needs as we try to rebuild after the coming collapse.  The others are water, and the things we tend to think of as the "four Bs" or the "five Gs".  Beans, bullets, band-aids and bullion, or grub, ground, gold, gas and guns.

I remember hearing around 2005 or so that "water is the next oil" and noticed the headlines yesterday that we can expect our water prices to triple by 2050.  I take a dim view of linear predictions like that, so while the details are a bunch of crap, I think the trend is valid.  The world may be 2/3 ocean, but not much of it is drinkable.  After the system goes down, water is imperative.  Remember the rule of 3s from first aid: you can go 3 minutes without air, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food.  Well, personally, I have enough fat storage to walk to Anchorage without eating, and could probably roll the first thousand miles, but you get the point. 

So I urge you to start considering ways to keep water around.  Collect rainwater (it's actually illegal in places, so be careful with local authorities) in a rain barrel, or perhaps underground cistern.  John Robb over at Resilient Communities has run a series on saving rain water - this link is just to one article.  If you live in a desert, you probably already pay a lot more attention to rainwater than those of us in the swamps do. The rule of thumb is a gallon of water per person per day, but I prefer to think of 2.  We live in a hot place, and I expect to loose more to perspiration than a northern tier resident.  If you're in the desert Southwest, where heat and low humidity dry you out quickly, you might want even more.  When you get down to it, the only time you can have too much water is if you need to carry it somewhere.

Purification is the next concern and there are many options for filters and treatments today.  Katadyn is a well respected filter brand and they have a lot of options; we have a couple.  There are limited use filter straws, ("it really does work for giardia. But not for typhoid infested water in the Ganges. The Frontier Water Survival Straw It's great for North America, though"), various kinds of filter bottles, and various projects to make them at home.  I have friends who have made simple filter systems and travel to Haiti to teach how to make them, and to get them into widespread use.  A little chlorine bleach, or calcium hypochlorite (pool shock) is a nice thing to have around, too. 

And from the strange occurrences file; I started thinking about writing on this topic fairly early today, and was pretty convinced I wanted to - at least - brush over it, even though I figure if any group of people pay attention to this, it's you guys.  Then Mrs. Graybeard got this email today from Preparedness Pro.  Called, "Is There a A Water Disaster Coming Your Way?", it has a few stories in there that certainly make you go hmmm.   Kinda spooky, really, but I was never big on that synchronicity stuff.  Go read.  

1 comment:

  1. SG,

    Here is a useful article on using pool "shock" (calcium hypochlorite) instead of liquid bleach, which won't keep as long or go as far:

    Here is a compact system for a base camp or family use where your water supply may have been compromised or is questionable:

    I have one, and it is compact, yet will provide water for a group. I bought a spare filter for it when I bought the system.