Tag Archives: microhydro

CONGO’S UNPOPULAR RE-ELECTION

Congo Election

Congo’s Kabila chases an unconstitutional, unpopular re-election

Congo ruling party shows all signs of seeking Kabila third term

KINSHASA (Reuters) – From the sprawling capital Kinshasa to villages deep in the equatorial forests, Congo’s ruling PPRD is in full-on election campaign mode – and President Joseph Kabila’s face is everywhere.

The deadline for declaring candidates for Democratic Republic of Congo’s scheduled Dec. 23 poll is just one month away, and Kabila, 46, is officially not allowed to run again: August 8, 2018

NO SIGN OF A SUCCESSOR

But his bearded portrait smiles down from billboards and T-shirts being printed by his People’s Party for Reconstruction and Democracy (PPRD), while there is no sign of a successor.

Kabila intends to bypass the constitution and run for a third term. Any such move would likely ignite chaos across the vast, mineral-rich country, which has never seen a peaceful change of power in the 58 years since independence from Belgium.

Kabila is unpopular in the capital Kinshasa and many parts of the country. A rare poll released in March showed that eight in 10 Congolese have an unfavorable opinion of him. Scores have died in protests since he refused to step down when his mandate expired 18 months ago.

Congo Election

Militias have proliferated, killing and displacing villagers, kidnapping foreigners and shutting down eco-tourist spots. The violence has even hit mining operations in Africa’s top copper producer and the world’s leading miner of cobalt. Continue reading CONGO’S UNPOPULAR RE-ELECTION

THE CONCEPTUAL AGE 2

The Conceptual Age has come.

The world as you know it is changing. The future belongs to a very different kind of person with a very different kind of mind. We are moving from an economy built on logical capabilities of the Information Age to an economy built on inventive, empathic, big picture capabilities of the Conceptual Age.

In the Conceptual Age we are doing what the overseas knowledge workers can’t do cheaply, that computers can’t do faster, and that satisfies the aesthetic, emotional and spiritual needs of a more prosperous time. In this new age, we need to offer something that satisfies the non-material, transcendent desires of an abundant age?

 So what are we to do to prepare ourselves for this change? We will concentrate on several aptitudes:

  1. The appetite for design thinking to reframe experience has never been greater. We start with Design: Today’s Tall Trees

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Forests act as a carbon sink by taking carbon dioxide out of atmosphere. It seems like simple arithmetic: a tree can absorb up to a ton of carbon dioxide over its lifetime (25 – 40 years), so planting one should be an easy way to mitigate climate change. Remember that tropical trees work 12 months of the year sequestering carbon because there is no dormant winter season. We need to plant billions of trees in Africa.

  1. We must tell our Story to communicate with others and to build a purpose.

Humans are not ideally set up to understand logic; they are set up to understand stories. Every society has told stories. We have a story to give away to someone else who needs it.

The basis of our work depends on agricultural mechanization. A young African will move to the city if all he can earn is $10/day. This same African will return to the land because mechanization has changed the whole picture: the farms can now be more productive.

Enter the world of Living Water MicroFinance Inc. Our company mission is to support women farmers and their families in Africa. We negotiate with landlords to make land available to these subsistence families for a long term lease over 25 years. We help produce cash crops, which include cacao and inter-cropping with yams and banana plantain. We start with a tree nursery that is supported by a Carbon Tax Fund, in which every tree that is planted and lives for 25 years has a net present value of $1.50.

  1. We must look at the Big Picture – combining all the pieces to a new whole or holistic thinking.

The ability to see the Big Picture encompasses the ability to grasp the relationships between relationships: integrating and imagining how all the pieces fit together. The person who invented the wheel may have been smart but the person who invented the other three wheels was a genius.

The Big Picture:

Stage 1     

We develop Agricultural Mechanization of Africa: The main objective of farm mechanization is increasing agricultural production. We focus primarily on the export of tractors.                          

Stage 2   Carbon Emission to be Solved

Continue reading THE CONCEPTUAL AGE 2

SEVEN BILLION TREES 2

THE HARD WAY: $100 THRILL ION

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EASY WAY: 7 BILLION TREES: $7 BILLION

Tropical trees cool earth most effectively, working 12 months of the year sequestering carbon dioxide emissions.  We need to plant seven billions of trees in Africa and the Amazon.

 NASA estimates that there are currently 400 billion trees globally. Every newly planted tree seedling in the tropics removes an average of 50 kilograms of CO2 from the atmosphere each year during its growth period of 20–50 years, compared with 13 kilograms of CO2 per year for a tree in the temperate regions. 

The addition of just seven billion trees in Africa (one for every person on Earth) would therefore give us a further 16 years of safe climate at our current rate of emissions. 

An average of $6 billion per year plus $1 billion for incentives for ten years could pay for the reforestation program. The total cost of $7 billion of trees in Africa  per year for ten years is about 1% of the world’s total annual military expenditures.

Most tropical hardwoods grow to maturity quickly (10 to 20 years) Compare a 5 year old tropical tree to a five year old northern counterpart, and you can easily see the difference in size: half of wood weight is carbon

Tropical trees take up water from rainfall and evaporate it through their leaves, and create cloud cover. These clouds reflect even more sunlight than grasslands or bare earth, thus cooling the earth more. By contrast, trees in snowy places like Canada, Scandinavia and Siberia absorb sunlight that would otherwise be reflected back to space by the bright white snow.  But in the tropics forests helped cool the planet by an average of 0.7 C, according to one study.

Forests act as a carbon sink by taking carbon dioxide out of atmosphere, but the more the climate is warming, the slower the trees are growing, the less carbon they suck up. These acclimated trees release far less CO2 at night, which are trees suddenly exposed to hot temperatures.  This hints that future CO2 emissions from Northern Hemisphere forests won’t be as large as scientists thought, even though they would still be on the rise.

It seems like simple arithmetic: a tree can absorb up to a ton of carbon dioxide over its lifetime (25 – 40 years), so planting one should be an easy way to mitigate climate change.

Over time they deplete their resources and are much more susceptible to additional stressors, such as damage by fire or a big drought or insect outbreaks.

Remember that tropical trees work 12 months of the year sequestering carbon because there is no dormant winter season. We need to plant billions of trees in Africa and the Amazon.

The Perfect Storm

billions trees Africa

When escalating global warming crosses one or more of the important climate tipping points you create the perfect storm of perfect storms: irreversible global warming. This will destabilize the global; it will then destabilize the global political landscape of functioning nations. As the climate, the global economy, and the political landscape of functioning nations destabilize, it will soon destabilize all of the normal social aspects of our individual lives, businesses, and organizations.

billions trees Africa
Billions of trees in Africa will make the Difference!

Continue reading SEVEN BILLION TREES 2

GLOBAL WARMING IS HERE! 2

GLOBAL WARMING AND OUR MISSION:  

Our mission is to be the best in the world in micro hydro electric and water resource management: by evolving innovative damless hydroelectric and water transfer technology. We create Today’s Tall Tree Nurseries to support Micro Finance for women farmers and their families using the Carbon Tax Fund, a new form of foreign aid. We export Mechanization into Africa for more productive agriculture. All this is done to fight Global Warming.

This, on current trends, will be the hottest year ever measured. The previous record was set in 2015; the one before in 2014. Fifteen of the 16 warmest years have occurred in the 21st century. Each of the past 14 months has beaten the global monthly temperature record.

According to NASA, this August was the hottest month on record. Again. That’s not the hottest August on record, or the hottest month of 2016. It means that August of 2016 was the hottest month since recording began – in 1880. That means 2016 is well underway to becoming the hottest year on record, just like the past three years. In fact, every month since October 2015 has set new monthly high-temperature records. This summer was hotter than last summer. This winter was warmer than last winter. And it doesn’t show signs of stopping.

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India has been hammered by cycles of drought and flood, as withering heat parches the soil and torches glaciers in the Himalayas. Southern and eastern Africa has been pitched into humanitarian emergencies by drought.

A short while ago, in Paris, 177 nations promised to try to ensure the world’s average temperature did not rise by more than 1.5 C above the pre-industrial level. Already it has climbed by 1.3 C – faster and further than almost anyone predicted. In one respect, the scientists were wrong. They told us to expect a climate crisis in the second half of this century. But it’s already here.

 We can expect more hurricanes, flooding, and tsunamis from weather changes and earthquakes as well as corresponding droughts.

Incidentally, if tsunamis are in the cards, what are you doing living on low lands near an ocean?

Continue reading GLOBAL WARMING IS HERE! 2

The African Famine Revisited 2

AFRICAN FAMINE AND OUR MISSION:  

Our mission is to be the best in the world in micro hydro electric and water resource management: by evolving innovative damless hydroelectric and water transfer technology. We create Today’s Tall Tree Nurseries to support Micro Finance for women farmers and their families using the Carbon Tax Fund, a new form of foreign aid. We export  African Mechanization  for more productive agriculture and to fight famine.

African Famine

When the rains failed in 1984 it was 16 straight years of meagre rainfall, which was all too much. Most of the sub-Saharan Africa was affected including Ethiopia. The survival of 30 million Africans was in imminent risk. There was yet another crop failure in Northern and Western Sudan.

The lessons learned from these famines are tough ones: droughts are inevitable, while famine is not. It is far better to undertake development programs in advance of climate failure and the most economical use of scarce resources. This means a long term support to avert future tragedies.Untitled-1f

Part of the reason for this tragedy was the need for sustainable development as opposed to the practices of overgrazing and cutting down scarce trees for firewood, which turned fragile lands into near deserts. This evolved into a loss of productive land because of a loss of topsoil through erosion, which is very hard to reverse.

The solution to this problem of imminent climate change means a fundamental change to African economic life and behavior in order to arrest this vicious cycle of poverty. 

A Fundamental Change to African Economic Life

The foreseeable future in Africa is disorder either politically or environmentally. There is a great need for change. Although this destruction is morally repugnant to Africans, the destruction of our environment must be also addressed as an investment in our planet’s future including the stabilizing of carbon emissions.

 In economic terms the destruction of our great forests was historically only valued for their timber and the clearing of land for agriculture. Hence, there was no economic incentive to save the forests.

The Common Good Counts for Very Little.

The national interest used to be a shared value, but wherever you look today in most of Africa the rule of thumb in public life is personal gain – not public good. The common thread in all this is the complete lack of consideration for other people.

It starts with politicians, whether in government or opposition. People go into politics not to serve or make a difference, but line up their pockets. People who are in power or in a position of authority act in their own personal interests, regardless of the impact on others. This same attitude drives the politician who steals money that could be used for a hospital, school or to provide potable water, and stashes it abroad. There is little evidence that this attitude will change anytime soon.

The utter disregard for the larger interests of the country and the people is so embedded in the ruling class, it may take a mass revolt to redress. Africans are not known for staging popular revolts but that may their only salvation. In the meantime, there is a peaceful approach.

An Alternative More Peaceful Approach

Continue reading The African Famine Revisited 2

AFRICAN POVERTY TRAP 2

AFRICAN POVERTY AND OUR MISSION:  

Our mission is to be the best in the world in micro hydro electric and water resource management: by evolving innovative damless hydroelectric and water transfer technology. We create Today’s Tall Tree Nurseries to support Micro Finance for women farmers and their families using the Carbon Tax Fund, a new form of foreign aid. We export Mechanization into Africa for more productive agriculture. We do this to address the problem of African Poverty.

AFRICAN POVERTY

There are many U.N. Agencies concerned with developing countries: World Bank (grants), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) leading the fight on hunger, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)  increasing food production, United Nation Development Program (UNDP) fighting poverty, United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) caring for the environment and biodiversity, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) improving children’s lives, World Food Program (WFP) fighting against global hunger.Untitled-4

The Millennium Development Goals includes eradication of poverty and hunger, the empowering of gender equality of women, sustainable development, safe drinking water, productive work for youth, addressing the landlocked problems of 15 African countries and islands, and the benefiting of new technology.

Over half of Africa’s population is deemed to live in extreme poverty. Over the last two centuries these poorest of poor have not been able to improve their lot. In fact, the gap between the richest economies and Africa had widened from one to twenty. The main reason for this increase has been technological advancement — not exploitation of the poor. The fight of terrorism is really a fight of poverty and deprivation.

The innovation gap has become one of the most important reasons for the divergence of wealth. It started with the advent of the steam engine and continued with electrification followed by massive investments in research and development.  

The poor nations of Africa faced obstacles related to climate (drought), depleted soils, food production, disease (malaria and AIDS), energy resources, over-population, inept and corrupt governments, a high debt load, denial of women’s rights and proximity to world markets (rural isolation).

African countries can break out of the poverty trap and put one foot on the first rung of the economic ladder. Some African countries avoided falling into this poverty trap because of their food production: fertilizer and proper seed selection. Many of these obstacles can be overcome with new technologies: irrigation and conservation measures.

African farmers have never experienced the Green Revolution which came about with high-yield varieties of food crops, irrigation and fertilizer. In India, wheat production climbed in 1960 from 11 million metric tons to 55 million metric tons in 1990 as a result of the Green Revolution.Untitled-5

The poverty itself causes economic stagnation: trees are cut down for firewood and soil becomes utterly destitute. These poor Africans have the lowest saving rate (10%) because they use their income merely to stay alive. They have little cash available for fertilizer, medicines or school fees and other basic needs. The minimum saving rate should be in excess of 15%.

Too little has been done to identify the specific, low-cost intervention that will make a difference in economic growth. We have been trained to deal with throwing millions of dollars at these problems, which remain after centuries of welfare. In Uganda, only 1.4% of the annual budget of $1.8 billion is devoted to water supply and sanitation, while only 4.8% was allocated to energy.

Crop yields can be sharply increased and electricity can be extended to the villages. What is required is investment for sustained economic development on a large scale. This is not a relentless drive for one magic bullet that will turn the tide. It is an integrated solution involving available land, women farmers and their families, tree nursery supported by a Carbon Tax Fund, fertilizing from the fish rabbit farm, and irrigation and electricity from the HUG Energy System.0000Today's-Tall-Tree2


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 will take place near a water source and beside a school with added agricultural training and monitored by village field officers. The first stage is the Living Water MicroFinance Inc. support for women farmers, which is not a welfare handout, but a rotating system of micro loans, which is payable at the end of a harvest.  The second phase is the introduction of a tree nursery, which is supported by the Carbon Tax Fund. Continue reading AFRICAN POVERTY TRAP 2

As the Future Catches Africa 2

AFRICA FUTURE AND OUR MISSION:  

Our mission is to be the best in the world in micro hydro electric and water resource management: by evolving innovative damless hydroelectric and water transfer technology. We create Today’s Tall Tree Nurseries to support Micro Finance for women farmers and their families using the Carbon Tax Fund, a new form of foreign aid. We export Mechanization into Africa for more productive agriculture. A Future in Africa depends on work like this.

A Future in Africa

Tall-Trees2 The best time to plant NUT TREES was 20 years ago

There is no doubt that Africa is well braced to become the Future Food Basket of the World.

Since the year 2000, there have been 27 major wars on the planet and 90% of these wars were civil wars, not because of ethnic diversity but because of a declining economy along with a lot of uneducated and unemployed teenagers. This happened despite the abundance of commodities. This resulted in a substantial brain drain of a knowledge-based world. Uganda use to be called the Switzerland of Africa before Idi Amin began the country’s biggest brain drain.

The countries that get rich are the ones who attract great minds or those countries that educate their own. Most of Africa does not, so it has little hope of accomplishing anything beyond survival. Africa has become irrelevant in the knowledge economy. So the developed economies have generally abandoned many of these countries to their fate: failing or falling apart.

Most of the inhabitants of Africa, even South African, Nigeria and Democratic Republic of Congo with all their resources have become poorer today that they were twenty years ago. In the last 35 years since 1970, the richest countries grew by 2%, while the poorest third countries did not grow at all. Many African countries either don’t get it or they simply can’t keep up. They get distracted by looking in their rear view mirror of culture and nationalism.

Land and people have become an instrument to be used and controlled.  Large tracks of land are being purchased at bargain basement prices by large international companies. This is exactly the opposite of what should happen: land and people should be the main means of generating wealth.

African countries need governments that provide economic and political stability.  A government’s job is to attract and keep smart and entrepreneurial people and to encourage the launching on new companies in the country. If what it really counts is having smart people, then they have to be willing to share one’s  time and space in order to interact with them. They need to discover how this can be done — not why it can’t be done. These new companies will demand a “hands-off” from bribery and collusion.

We are living in an explosive age of knowledge because of the Internet and Google. The rules are different in a knowledge economy. If you cannot use new-found knowledge and equity, you will remain uncompetitive. A measure of knowledge intensity is a simple formula: Value-Added Exports/Commodity Exports. If the ratio is less than one, the country will remain vulnerable to commodity cycles.

The basic industry of the planet is agribusiness. Most of humanity is living from growing, transforming, distributing and selling food. Those who are not market savvy or technologically-literate in agriculture are going to have a hard time.

The good news is that history can change faster than one can expect. It all depends on a country’s ability to adapt and adopt an ethical, political and economic challenge and  to use the knowledge
wisely.  Africa is well braced to become the Future Food Basket of the World.Untitled-3

Living Water MicroFinance Inc. proposes to begin important changes: Continue reading As the Future Catches Africa 2

AFRICAN FARMING TODAY 2

 AFRICAN FARMING & OUR MISSION:  

Our mission is to be the best in the world in micro hydro electric and water resource management: by evolving innovative damless hydroelectric and water transfer technology. We create Today’s Tall Tree Nurseries to support Micro Finance for women farmers and their families using the Carbon Tax Fund, a new form of foreign aid. We export Mechanization for more productive African Farming.

African Farming

Big problems arising from increased crop production in African farming include tremendous erosion and the depletion of natural vegetation. Marginal land is particularly vulnerable. The results are all too evident: perennial streams are now ephemeral, and massive quantities of topsoil silt up dams and flow into the oceans. The region is doomed to more frequent famines that will be the consequence of diminishing cropland, grazing and water resources.

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A total of 340 million ha of woody vegetation in dryland zones of Africa have become degraded through human activities like; overgrazing, agricultural expansion, overexploitation, and deforestation. Both of Africa’s staple crops, maize and sorghum, are expected to be badly hit by increasing severity of weather. Demand from growing populations may double food prices.Local Nursery

The absence of investments in African farming means that farms remain small; the added value of agricultural processing is negligible or absent. With the number of water-scarce countries set to rise over the next ten years, more needs to be done.

Africans need to turn their mind to boosting economic growth, which has ground to a pace slower than population growth. Without greater opportunities, the frustrations of the young and uneducated will only worsen.

Investments in small-scale hydroelectric technologies and irrigation could yield a direct net benefit of up to $200 billion to Africa’s 100 million farmers.

The Energy policy of 2003 of Tanzania show that 1% of population in rural Tanzania has access to electricity. The rest approximately 98% use firewood which also implies alarming rate of environmental destruction.

All It Takes Is 3

The United Nations uses three key variables as average measure of human development in any country:

  • a decent standard of living (food);
  • a long and healthy life (health); and
  • being knowledgeable (knowledge).

Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day.

  • Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime…
  • But why does the man have no fish?
  • Not just through charitable funds, but we engender a genuine partnership with the oppressed.
  • We develop Leadership Skills.
  • Carbon Tax Funds will make a difference not just for the life of one person, but to an entire global community.

What should a community do with its unused land?

Continue reading AFRICAN FARMING TODAY 2

Carbon Pollution and Irrigation 2

 CARBON POLLUTION AND OUR MISSION: 

Our mission is to be the best in the world in micro hydro electric and water resource management: by evolving innovative damless hydroelectric and water transfer technology. We create Today’s Tall Tree Nurseries to support Micro Finance for women farmers and their families using the Carbon Tax Fund, a new form of foreign aid. We export Mechanization into Africa for more productive agriculture. We do this to address Carbon Pollution.

TO SOLVE WORLD’S CARBON POLLUTION

New Trees are the only solution to soaking up Carbon Dioxide:

Our Mission: to help solve the problem of carbon dioxide build up in the world by growing and managing mature forests of foliage, fruit and nut trees that eventually are used in lumber — not firewood. The Carbon Tax Fund supports a Micro finance initiative to support women farmers and their families who will nurture these trees over their lifetime. The Net Present Value of each tree is $1.49 for 25 years.

Please Noteanother calculation of NPV of fruit trees living for 25 years = $0.49/tree plus $1.00/tree for maintenance: $1.49/tree. (Fruit trees are productive for 25 years and then are replaced.)

Carbon Tax & Irrigation

Africa has 60% of the world’s uncultivated arable land!

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Agroforestry is a win-win solution to the seemingly difficult choice between reforestation and agricultural land use, because it increases the storage of carbon and also enhances agricultural productivity.

Trees in the agroecosystem may help buffer against both production risk and income risk. Lots of excellent fruit and vegetables can be added very economically to the diet as well as forage for the rabbits.

Rabbit farmers could grow foliage trees like Moringa trees as a living fence for nutritious leaves for the 50 families and forage for the rabbits. One hundred grams of fresh Moringa tree leaves provide the same amount of protein as an egg. The Moringa tree pod is cooked as a vegetable in India. Ben-Oil is produced from these pods.

Farmers can also grow the allergy-free Mulberry, in which the ripe fruit is edible and is widely used in pies, tarts and wines. Rabbits love them and are fast and productive too. Bamboo can be grown as excellent material for cages and even buildings.

The actual goal of carbon sequestration is to reduce carbon emissions in the world. Just as important is the creation of a continuous sustainable agroforestry opportunity for women farmers and their family who will maintain the orchards and trees over the 50 years. The orchard trees are chosen for both their produce (fruit, nuts and foliage) and their value as lumber. The carbon capture remains in the lumber as opposed to being burned off as firewood.

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THE RABBIT FISH FARM and Today's-Tall-Trees smart carbon tax subsidies have the potential to change the growth of the Africa’s small holder farmers. This will help solve the problem of carbon dioxide build up in the world by growing and managing mature forests of foliage, fruit and nut trees that eventually are used in lumber — not firewood. The Carbon Tax Fund supports a Microfinance initiative to support women farmers and their families who will nurture these trees over their lifetime. The Net Present Value of each tree is $1.49 over 25 years.

The last piece of the puzzle is irrigation and electricity. The HUG System provides both irrigation and 780 Kw (5,470,000 Kwh) of electricity from the kinetic energy gained from nearby moving water. South Africa household consumption is 2,760 Kwh/year: this amount of electricity would support 2000 households.

The HUG DifferenceUntitled-3

HUG offers off-grid solutions to create smart, renewable approaches to bring hydro electric power and irrigation to the poor faster, cheaper and more effectively: HugEnergy.us

Annual Carbon Sequestration

FACT: This increase in carbon dioxide from roughly 280 parts per million (ppm) prior to the Industrial Revolution to about 392 ppm today is having a dramatic impact on our climate, both warming our climate and altering our weather with more droughts and more very extreme weather events. Continue reading Carbon Pollution and Irrigation 2