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Thread: Solar power increases heroin production in Afghanistan

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    Post Solar power increases heroin production in Afghanistan

    What the heroin industry can teach us about solar power -- Since 2013, the Afghani opium have switched to solar power to pump water, significantly increasing the world's supply of heroin.

    According to the UN body responsible for tracking and tackling illegal drug production, the UNODC, almost 80% of all Afghan opium now comes from the south-west of the country, including Helmand. That means pretty much two-thirds of global supply. So, not the kind of place you would expect to be at the forefront of efforts to decarbonise the economy. But, once I had seen that first solar panel, I saw more. In fact there seemed to be a small array of solar panels in the corner of most farm compounds, and that was back in 2016. It is only now that the scale of the revolution in heroin production I was unwittingly witnessing has been quantified. Because I wasn't the only person to notice that Afghan farmers were taking an interest in low-carbon technologies.

    The first report of an Afghan farmer using solar power came back in 2013. The following year traders were stocking a few solar panels in Lashkar Gah, the Helmandi capital. Since then growth has been exponential. The number of solar panels installed on farms has doubled every year. By 2019 Mr Brittan's team had counted 67,000 solar arrays just in the Helmand valley. In Lashkar Gah market, solar panels are now stacked in great piles three storeys high.

    It is easy to understand why trade has been so brisk. Solar has transformed the productivity of farms in the region. I've got a video shot a couple of weeks ago on an opium farm in what used to be desert. The farmer shows us his two arrays of 18 solar panels. They power the two electric pumps he uses to fill a large reservoir. He films the small canal that allows him to use the water to irrigate his land. All around, his fields seem to be flourishing. He harvested his opium crop in May; now he is growing tomatoes.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/science-env...=pocket-newtab

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    Any time you give a man something he doesn't earn, you cheapen him. Our kids earn what they get, and that includes respect. -- Woody Hayes​

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    stjames1_53 (08-01-2020)

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    I'm in the wrong business. I should be selling solar panels in Afghanistan ..............................
    For waltky: http://quakes.globalincidentmap.com/
    "The Nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools."
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    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote" B. Franklin
    Igitur qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum

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    DGUtley (08-01-2020)

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    Solar is good for specific tasks in the right environment.
    ΜOΛΩΝ ΛΑΒΕ

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