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Pitcairn Islands Study Center

News - April 11, 2013

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  [California Study Center]


Pacific Union College, Angwin, California USA.


                        ANGWIN (Napa County) Calif., April 11, 2013—Amid revelations coming out of London that some £250,000.00 to put wind power on Pitcairn Island has been mismanaged by the United Kingdom's Department for International Development, the Pitcairn Islanders are hoping that someone in the British government will listen to what they really want in the way of bringing green power to their homes.

                        "We've never been keen on wind power," said a Pitcairn islander in a message to the Pitcairn Islands Study Center located here. "Those big turbines would take up too much space on our tiny island, and the upkeep of them would be a daunting task.

                        "What most of us would like would cost far less than the large amount that has now been wasted on wind turbines that we'll probably and happily never see.

                        "What we'd like is a small but adequate solar unit right beside our home where we can care for it and maintain it ourselves and keep the unit up and running," said the Pitcairner. "If the initial purchase can be subsidized, it would be in every owner's best interest to look after and maintain his or her own solar unit, pay for replacement of old batteries, etc.

                        "We'd prefer that approach to any big, central solar collector on the island, which, again, would take up too much space, and would likely suffer from upkeep neglect. We are better at looking after our private belongings rather than public property.

                        "This placing of a small solar collector at each home would also avoid the expenditure of big bucks to purchase and then maintain a big collector, the stringing of power lines to island homes, and other necessities."

                        Through recent years the Pitcairners have relied on a diesel generator which provided electrical power to island homes for only a portion of the 24-hour cycle. Now, though, with Pitcairn's push to become economically stable through tourism, the request for additional power for a greater number of island homes has increased markedly.

                        The complexities and danger to the islanders' life and limb in off-loading fuel for the generator from ships off-shore (Pitcairn has no harbor), and getting it onto the island through often dangerous surf, also plays into the Pitcairners' request for an alternative power source.