Archive for the ‘Disaster preparedness’ Category
If you do not have a solar oven or solar cooker in your “bug out” bag yet, it is a worthwhile consideration. Many solar ovens and cookers, especially the compact, portable panel models, can be a reasonable purchase (some for less than $100). There are many plans also available if you want to try constructing your own.
As far as that goes, many great survival kits and packages are now available at fair prices. In an emergency, catastrophe, or survival situation, there may not time to locate that “needle and thread kit” that you took out of your bag to fix torn trousers, etc. Get a commercial kit, keep it in a known place, don’t move it around, and you will be better prepared for whatever happens, even if it is just a short power outage. And that’s why it’s called “prepping”.
It is true that, normally, you do not want to set up your solar cooker on a rainy day. We who solar cook regularly, that is, as regularly as the sunshine allows, try to be prepared for the next sunny solar cooking day. That merely means having some sort of plan, supplies and recipes. It also means making sure that your solar cooker is clean and ready.
Also, if the forecast says, for example, 40% chance of rain, it is likely not to be an all day rain. So, there may be a few “rays of hope” in that. If the morning is sunny, do your cooking then, or, maybe around noon. Of course there are always a lot of variables, like, do you have time to do that before work? Or, will anyone else be home to bring in the cooker should the forecast be wrong and a sudden downpour threatens your solar oven? However, from our own experience as busy people, we have found it often possible to squeeze in a simple meal from cooking with sunshine, even if it means doing it between the raindrops.
Sometimes it may depend upon the solar cooker itself. For example, if you just want to make some hotdogs, hot sausage, baked sweet potatoes, or an omelet, the GoSun Solar Stove works perfectly under these conditions. That is, due to its evacuated tube technology and high temperatures, it can have those dishes ready for you in less than an hour under partly cloudy skies. Look at the photo of wings made on a mostly cloudy day. Be sure, however, to bring it inside at the first raindrop, as it, like other models can be damaged.
If the cloudy day shower does not stop your solar cooking, then it should not stop you from taking a shower. Check out the available solar showers for your next hiking/camping experience.
Some of us really love solar cooking, don’t we? Yes, whether you are a newcomer, or an old hat that’s been cooking with sunshine for decades, each one includes it in their own, hopefully, “green lifestyle”. We search for new recipes like we’re hunting bear, try out new ingredients in old dishes, and, if we’re not too meek, invite friends, family and neighbors over to be the latest “guinea pigs” for our newest solar cuisine.
We have become passionate about our solar cookers. We seek out new methods to use them. Some use them to dehydrate their food for long term storage in case of food shortages. Some of us teach others how to use them in survival scenarios.
For many in the Third World and other nations across the globe stricken by war and catastrophe, the solar oven is a life saver. Getting more panel style and box style cookers into the hands of the poor across the world is actually a mission of several of the commercial solar oven manufacturers. Much less dangerous, and certainly healthier, than smokey wood fires, solar ovens help provide the cooked meals and nourishment needed for so many living in impoverished countries.
So, why not make solar cooking your passion? It’s relatively inexpensive to get started and their are loads of resources, groups and blogs (like this one) that can help you get educated and launched into solar cooking. You’ll find how easily you can get “hung up” on sun cooking.
And, speaking of getting “hung up”, here is another way to live your green lifestyle. There are an amazing number of low-cost and clever clothesline/dryer racks out there. They make it easy for you to maintain a green lifestyle in just one more way. While your solar oven bakes the meal, you hang up your wash and let the solar powered “dryer” do the rest! Take a look at this:
As has been proved and demonstrated by many, a solar oven or solar cooker, can be a life saver in a survival situation. Recent world disasters, such as the tsunamis, floods, hurricanes, earthquakes and other natural disasters, have made the solar cooker a godsend to thousands of homeless people enduring such tribulation.
Having a reliable survival knife, often with numerous helpful features, is another item that should be included in the survival kit. Not only will it help with food preparation for using the solar cooker, but it has a great variety of other uses.
A survival knife worth its weight, will help you set up camp, prepare game, build an emergency shelter, help in food preparation, and even start a campfire. A number of great survival knives exist and many can be had for $20 to $50. Often, features include different blade edges for different uses and a built-in, usually magnesium, fire starter. Typically a sheath is included. Let Bear Grylls, survival expert, tell you about one he has developed.
Find an ultimate survival knife to add to your emergency supplies. Learn to use it with your solar oven.
A number of commercial solar ovens are now available on the market. Some cost more, some do more, but one of the best all around dependable, economical models is the SOS Solar Sport. It is manufactured here in the USA and uses mostly recycled materials.
It only weighs about 10lbs, so it’s easy to transport wherever you’re headed.
Use it to bake, boil or steam your favorite foods and to prepare a variety of delicious dishes.
The oven chamber holds 2, 3 quart pots. That’s large enough to make lots of food for guests, or your big family.
With its simple, well-insulated design, you can use the Sport throughout the year. It sets at either a 30 or 60 degree angle so that you can take advantage of the different sun angles year-round. Like in Summer, without reflectors…
Or, early Spring….with reflectors
Yes, you can set your solar oven and cook in the snow (not while it’s falling, of course!). Autumn is as great a time as any to break out the solar oven. Just use the sun’s free energy and make a delicious meal.
Solar cooking using the Sport is so easy, you can youngest to oldest join in this new way to cook food without open fires or fossil fuels.
So, get out your Sport, and start creating some nutritious and delicious meals with it.
The truth about solar ovens (box style), is that you can cook just about anything in one. The folks in Third World countries are discovering how useful they are everyday. Many people throughout the globe still cook their dinners over wood fires. Often, they have to endure dangerous and treacherous conditions just to obtain this precious fuel.
However, in just a few decades, since the introduction of the Sun Oven and other popular commercially available solar ovens, many of these same populations are safely enjoying their food cooked by an abundant and free local energy source...the sun!Why don’t more people use these amazing sun-powered devices? After all, most commercial solar ovens are lightweight, durable, easy to transport and easy to use…just about anywhere! Like on your boat, or, …on the next snow day…
Whatever the situation, you can have a blast making your next culinary creation in a solar oven. It’s an appliance that’s made for having fun with family and friends.
Is it time for solar cookers to finally get their due by going mainstream? Interest in solar cooking has been growing for decades, but it seems to be turning an important corner with increased public acceptance.
There are more commercial sales of solar ovens at trade shows and environmental events than ever before. The National Geographic TV Channel now runs a show called “Doomsday Preppers”. Families preparing for varying types of disasters is the main theme. Solar ovens have been featured twice in this show which just recently aired.
Sure, and why shouldn’t they catch on? Anyone interested in saving energy, the planet and the money in their wallet, should be interested in solar cooking. Whether one builds their own oven from scratch by using a set of good plans, or purchases a commercial model, they are likely to begin saving on their gas/electric bill right away.
With proper planning, a person can use the solar oven on nearly every sunny day, and, many partly sunny days. Meals can also be made for future consumption. Dehydration of many foods is possible. By storing ingredients and keeping recipes handy, planning becomes easier for the new solar chef.
Help make solar cooking not just a barbecue “showoff ” thing, but bring it into the mainstream by cooking every sun-blessed day. The rewards await those who try.
Scenario: Earthquake in Southwest US, 5/10/15. Reporter: “A major 9.1 scale earthquake happened today and has caused mass destruction and loss of life in the region. Most sensitive is the suspension of natural gas distribution and scattered electrical outages. At this time, no complete assessment of the overall damage is known and no estimate exists for the restoration of the aforementioned service. Some looting of grocery stores is already happening.”
Where might you be if such a circumstance is manifested? Could be you’re a victim at ground zero, or, injured in a hospital. Possibly you are trapped in a building a waiting for rescue. The recent Japanese disaster has sharpened our senses for real world catastrophe. Those poor people have certainly endured a lot. Loss of life, damage to the economy and infrastructure are all too real.
So, if it happens in our “backyard”, having a solar cooker handy and some stored dry food items may help you and your family over the rough spots. An earthquake can sever gas transmission lines thereby forcing authorities to shut them off for safety’s sake. Plans for more electric generation by natural gas use are underway. This could compound the problem in the event of a major disaster like an earthquake. It is likely that both electric and gas utility distribution could be suspended for quite awhile.
So, get out your sun oven and practice making entire meals with it. Bake bread, steam vegetables, make soups and stews. You’ll find it to be a very reliable and worthy friend in such a catastrophe. Certainly, worldwide, this is already a fact for some. Let’s make it real for millions more before the next “big one” hits.
There’s some food for thought in your solar oven.
The newest, and largest, solar electric (hybrid) oven is the SunFocus (TM). Manufactured by SunBD Corp, it has a large cooking chamber; 13.5 x 13.5 x 6.25 inches. Most notable, is its high quality, made in America craftsmanship.
With such a large internal chamber at your disposal, you will find it easily accommodates most casserole dishes, a pizza, whole chicken, or small turkey. By using those, yes..dark-colored thin-walled metal pots, you can prepare several dishes simultaneously with this “big boy” solar electric oven.
The most touted feature of a solar electric oven is its electric backup. Should cloudy skies befall you in the middle of your solar cooking day, just switch the SunFocus to electric mode, the thermostat will keep up the temperature until sunny skies reappear (as they often do), or, until your meal is ready. A solar electric oven is very handy in the portions of our country not so blessed by sunshine, like New York and Pennsylvania. The highly efficient electric element within it operates on just a few pennies (uses 75% less electric than a traditional electric oven). It comes with side reflectors to increase cooking temperatures while using it as a normal solar oven. Temperatures of 400 degrees F are possible without the electric backup.
Like other solar cookers, the SunFocus uses a clever suitcase design with a carrying handle which makes it portable and easy to store. Remember, any solar oven may be a lifesaver during an emergency or catastrophe.