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Re: Mark Roest encourages social business ventures with Renewables West

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  • Andrius Kulikauskas
    Mark, I share your reply with Meredith ( clonearmy@gmail.com ). I also blogged parts of your letters at http://www.includer.org/?p=711 The Includer: Episode
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 17, 2009
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      I share your reply with Meredith ( clonearmy@... ).

      I also blogged parts of your letters at
      "The Includer: Episode 46: Never Expect Power At-All".

      Yes, it would be great to have a list of recommendations on the best
      available solutions around the world.

      Andrius Kulikauskas, Minciu Sodas, http://www.ms.lt, ms@...

      Mark Roest wrote:
      > Hello Meredith and All,
      > Jon is the inventor of the Kyoto products; if you provide the product
      > questions you have, he may be able to assist you (please copy me, too!
      > I'd like to know both questions and answers). I would like to know who
      > is interested in selling his products, and in going together with
      > others to aggregate full container orders (almost everything he makes
      > ships flat).
      > Jon mentioned that the Butterfly only works well in full direct sun,
      > not on cloudy days. One of the services Renewables West could provide
      > is helping you choose what electricity-making products to buy or build
      > (or sell) in a given climate. Jon also sells hot water systems, which
      > would conserve on electricity (we use natural gas in California, but
      > is appears that much of the world heats water with electricity). A
      > kilowatt saved is a kilowatt earned!
      > I don't know what the production release dates are for those products
      > that are not being manufactured yet. My question is in preparation for
      > doing business plans, and finding a way to move forward. Jon's
      > brochure says he provides financing, as well as the carbon credits
      > that make his product line really affordable.
      > Regards,
      > Mark Roest
      > MarkLRoest@... <mailto:MarkLRoest@...>

      The Includer is a device for reading and writing emails offline. At some
      point, you’ll want to upload and download them at an Internet access
      point. But what if you don’t have one? Or maybe you have access to the
      Internet through your mobile phone, but you don’t have enough
      electricity to power a laptop or computer?
      Renewables West sells Solar Rover

      Renewables West sells Solar Rover

      This month Pamela McLean (of Episode 31) dedicated her First Thursday
      Chat to helping Folabi Sunday in rural Nigeria (of Episode 40) think
      through how to power a local ICT centre. Her invitation explained:

      You may remember that Fola uses his phone to go online. He has been
      doing some successful experiments linking his phone to a PC. He is
      wondering about the possibility of helping the Information Centre at
      Ago-Are to use this approach in order to bring email facilities to
      Ago-Are. I think various people in Minciu Sodas in East Africa have been
      exploring similar ideas, linking in with Ricardo’s sneakernet ideas. I
      hope Pastor David, manager of the Info-Centre, will also manage to be
      with Fola when he joins us (Fola may be a bit late as he has is teaching
      earlier in the day, but he will make it as soon as he can). Either they
      will have to run a generator (and the Info centre one is very old and
      unreliable now) or they will need to find some other solution.

      A flavor of the chat:

      Ricardo: Pam and Fola, have you both read through the 2nd version of the
      plan? I suggested using a laptop for internet access, as it’s battery
      powered, and not dependent on NEPA. I set out a range of options for
      power. :: Also, a GPRS/3G phone for internet access runs on battery
      power, or you can use a USB 3G Modem, powered from the laptop battery
      when NEPA goes off. … Fola, what do you think the best options are for
      power? In the 2nd version, i mentioned that a laptop battery could be
      charged a little from many different sources, to keep it 100% topped up.
      … Yes sasha, for the Ago-Are ICT centre, they could use an old laptop
      from ebay, plus a new battery. :: Sasha, I emailed a whole plan to fola
      and pam, but you haven’t seen it yet. …. The centre can charge a laptop
      battery a little from NEPA when it’s on, from a 12V DC car cigarette
      lighter, or buy a small solar charger, like solargorilla. … Hi Graham.
      In Nigeria, NEPA, the 240V mains power is terrible. It comes on, then
      straight off for 7 days, on for an hour etc. Solar would be very good,
      if the community can afford the capital cost of the solar charger. ::
      I’ve seen commercial laptop solar chargers like the solargorilla, but
      they are 137 GBP. Is it possible to make a solar charger system for
      laptops (aboout 18V DC at 3.5 AMPs i think). … Fola, the ago-are centre
      will presumably want to keep the cost of equipment down. We could start
      with experiments on internet-access, using your phone for the day and
      one of the existing PCs :: but the PC needs 240V power from somewhere. …
      We need to think about the short-term and long-term power for the
      centre. Although in the short-term, you could use a solar laptop
      charger, that would still leave the rest of the equipment (PCs, TV,
      Satellite receiver etc) without a good power supply. :: Fola, In a
      typical month, is NEPA on for enough hours to charge some car batteries,
      to use for the PCs etc when NEPA is off.

      Folabi Sunday: I think using a laptop will solve NEPA problem for us in
      AA … And replacing the old battery with new ones will be better than
      waitng for nepa … This is a good idea but how do we solve NEPA … I took
      the small gen from my younger sister to use personally … There is an old
      lister gen that is usually developing faults and it use diesel which is
      costly than petrol :: I have done that in my own room and not in the
      centre … And it works perfectly except that my Megabite runs off faster
      than on mobile and I have to print out R tips on how to reduce spent
      date and digest them because they seem thecnical to me …

      Graham Knight: I’m puzzled as no-one seems to ever mention
      solar-charging for mobiles. …
      Kyoto Butterfly Solar Generator yields 800 W, hot air, hot water.

      Kyoto Butterfly Solar Generator yields 800 W, hot air, hot water.

      I did some research into electric generators. I couldn’t find anything
      at Appropedia, surprisingly. (Later, I had the chance to give my
      feedback to Preston at Global Swadeshi). I wonder what Edward Cherlin of
      Earth Treasury would recommend. And then a few days later we got a
      letter from Mark Roest about his new venture:

      Mark Roest: Last Sunday I spent several hours at the Maker Fair (see
      Make Magazine’s website) … Jon is the head of Kyoto, Free is the Sun. I
      would like to invite discussion with you all about setting up one or
      more distributorships (larger scale) and / or dealerships (local level)
      to retail his product line. The Kyoto Family product group is
      particularly appropriate for small social ventures created by and around
      both Independent Thinkers and mutual support groups. This will generate
      real revenues, and it will also pave the way to creating complex solar
      businesses — look at the Butterfly, which generates 800 watts per panel,
      plus 400 degree Celcius air and 70 degree C water from cooling the
      panels (it’s a concentrating collector, 12 feet long, and tracks the sun
      on two axes!). That business can create revenues that can be the capital
      for building the houses he designed, which will sell for $1000 per 100
      square foot (9 square meters) module, which can be arranged 4 around a
      central space, which needs floor and roof to make a 5th module — 500
      square feet of high-tech living space, with eco-utilities, for $5000.
      Please let me know if you would like to participate in planning this
      social business venture. David Alan Foster, David’s employer, and I are
      also building a solar sales business, Renewables West, which can source
      and sell globally. That is probably the vehicle we will use to work with

      Meredith Patterson: Sometime in the next month or two I will be going to
      Ghent to take a workshop from Casa Calida, which teaches people how to
      construct low-cost timber-and-strawbale homes. I suspect they will be
      quite interested in practical solutions for solar electricity and heat,
      and I’m interested in finding out more about the Butterfly for my own
      house project.

      Mark Roest: Jon mentioned that the Butterfly only works well in full
      direct sun, not on cloudy days. One of the services Renewables West
      could provide is helping you choose what electricity-making products to
      buy or build (or sell) in a given climate.

      That sounds like a good service!
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