for those of us not in the bay area, it's good to think now about what to do if the power grid goes out for hours, days, or even weeks. these kinds of systemic cascading failures will be increasingly common as climate change begins to get into gear this decade.
you don't need to have solar panels or a generator yourself, but it's a good idea to know somebody who does. especially if you have medicine that requires refrigeration, but also to charge portable devices.
it helps to have some large containers around for hauling water. keep them filled and rotate the water periodically. water pumps don't work when the power goes out
the infrastructure almost everywhere wasn't designed for rapid changes in climate and increasingly severe storms. much of it is already pushed past the end of its expected lifespan. if you can, gather materials to ride out power, water, and supply chain disruptions and get more than you'll need so you can share
@substack I think we'll see increasingly products quietly designed for this.
A lot of it will be in home battery storage, which is already taking off and is needed to deal with the duck curve problem too.
There are a couple of grid tie inverters that can kinda, sorta power one outlet when the grid is down and the sun it shining.
The Enphase IQ8 microinverter promises to take that a lot further.
@joeyh climate chaos affects the supply chains for these products too. present levels of consumption (and thereby extraction) simply aren't sustainable and that goes for off-grid "renewable" tech as well. using much less energy by being selective and careful about the technologies you do end up using solves a bunch of problems at once
@joeyh for example, at our farm we are entirely off-grid and most of our systems run direct on 12v or 5v. 2 of the small solar systems are 12v directly and 1 is 24v but has a buck converter to step the 24v down to 12 and we use automotive ports and usb everywhere. we barely use anything AC, only really the soldering iron and hot glue gun, and those are from a 300w inverter designed for car power ports
@joeyh the computers all run direct off of DC with automotive chargers or diy boost/buck converters. we use hand saws and hand drills for construction (which are way less of a pain for the scale we operate at: a friend of ours got a generator to run a saw and it was nothing but trouble). we also don't have any refrigeration and mostly harvest fresh from the garden whenever we make food
@substack yeah, I followed spider-farm when you were on scuttlebutt. I'm 100% offgrid too, and my house uses around 1/10th the US average energy.
But there's alternative and then there's mass market, like it or not, so I am excited when I see indications the mass market is making any kind of improvement.
@substack a fridge plugged into an IQ8 with a single 300w solar panel should be able to keep food cold on sunny days.
Fill the freezer with water for thermal mass and it will probably keep sufficiently cool overight with no power.
Add 2 more solar panels and IQ8's and it will run on cloudy days too.
That's a much simplified version of my offgrid fridge0.branchable.com needing none of its special components of software.
@joeyh 3 x 300w solar panels is bigger than our biggest system here ;)
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