On june 6, 2007, Nina Alvarez and Nicolas Garcia from CNN visited blueEnergy in Bluefields, Nicaragua to film brothers Mathias and Guillaume Craig for CNN’s Global Initiative "CNN Heroes." CNN Heroes spotlights and celebrates the very best of humankind by showcasing examples of ordinary people who have accomplished extraordinary deeds. On June 7, 2007, CNN accompanied blueEnergy over 30 miles on the open ocean through a major storm to Monkey Point. There, CNN filmed blueEnergy raising its turbine and turning on the lights in Monkey Point for the first time. The CNN segment was presented by Anderson Cooper on Tuesday, July 31st, and will be rebroadcast during all major CNN segments on Tuesday, August 7th and on an as yet undetermined Saturday or Sunday after that. The segment, plus bonus footage is available now online at: http://www.cnn.com/heroes
Bluefields office struck by lightning
On the night blueEnergy premiered on CNN Heroes, the office was struck by lightning. Thankfully no one was hurt. Unfortunately however, nearly all of our electronic equipment, including internet, 3 computers, printer, digital projector, and television, were wiped out. blueEnergy needs your help now more than ever to recover from this major setback. Please consider making a monetary donation or if you have a laptop or digital projector you no longer need, please consider donating them.
New installation in the community of Kakabila
In april, a team led by longtime volunteers Arnaud Clappier and Anne-Claire Impens installed a new hybrid wind/solar energy system in the community of Kakabila. kakabila is a Meskito Indian community on the Pearl Lagoon, north of Bluefields. The energy system includes a 12 ft diameter, 1 kW turbine, mounted on an 80 ft tilt-up tower and 200 W of solar panels. The electricity from the installation powers two schools and a community center and will soon serve as a community battery charging station for private batteries. Major funding for the installation was provided by l’Ile de France and the project was done in collaboration with the Municipal Government of Pearl Lagoon.
New installation in the community of Set Net
In may, a blueEnergy team installed a new hybrid wind/solar energy system in the small fishing community of Set Net. Set Net is a long and narrow community situated on the beach facing the Caribbean Ocean. The winds at Set Net are very strong and smooth due to the obstruction-free nature of the site. blueEnergy installed a 1 kW turbine on a 40 ft tilt-up tower and had to use a large amount of concrete and rebar for the foundation and anchors because the water table was very near the surface, preventing the team from digging to the normal depth. The electricity from the installation powers a school and will soon serve as a community battery charging station for private batteries. Major funding for the installation was provided by l’Ile de France and the project was done in collaboration with the Municipal Government of Pearl Lagoon.
New installation in the community of Monkey Point
Monkey Point is an isolated community approximately 30 miles south of Bluefields on the Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua. The community is home to 300 inhabitants and has never had a sustained power source until june 2007 when blueEnergy, accompanied by a CNN film crew, installed one of its hybrid wind/solar electric systems. The electric system, made up of a 1 kW turbine on an 80 ft tilt-up tower along with 100 W of solar panels, is expected to provide 5 kWh per day of energy, enough to power the school, communication radio and to charge batteries for the health clinic and 8 residences. Next, blueEnergy hopes to add a second energy system to power an integrated water pumping, purification, storage and distribution system.
New installation on the IPCC-INATEC campus in Bluefields
In june, blueEnergy completed its third energy system installation on the campus of IPCC-INATEC in Bluefields. The installation is co-located with blueEnergy’s shop and consists of a 8 ft 500 W turbine (soon to be upgraded to a 12 ft 1 kW turbine) mounted on a 100 ft lattice tower. This is the largest tower blueEnergy has built and is a departure from the more standard tilt-up tower. Lattice towers, which resemble radio or cell phone towers, are used when space constraints exist and when heights above 80 – 100 ft are required. The electricity from the installation provides primary power to the blueEnergy shop and also backup power to the IPCC-INATEC’s main administrative offices. Major funding for the installation was provided by the Edgerton Foundation.
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blueEnergy is dedicated to delivering sustainable energy services to disadvantaged communities. Most of the communities blueEnergy works in have long suffered from colonial domination, natural disasters, oppressive governments and civil war. Their situation today is a product of this long, deeply rooted history; changing their situation requires a solid, long-term commitment, both from within and from organizations willing to help. blueEnergy is ready to answer the call, but we need your help to ensure that we have the financial resources needed to sustain our efforts. Make a monthly commitment today to support blueEnergy’s mission to affect systematic change in the lives of disadvantaged communities.Help turn the lights on and keep them on.