Prepare for power outages and water shortages during WW3

Article updated on 15 Jul 2020

With the imminent 3rd World War and catastrophic natural disasters, the need to increase one’s preparedness is critical.

Prepare for power outages and water shortages during natural disasters and World War 3

1. Introduction to preparing your home for WW3

Through spiritual research, we have found that the years 2020 – 2023 are going to be increasingly difficult for the world. The coronavirus pandemic is just the beginning of these adverse times. There will be an escalation in the amount of unrest worldwide along with conflicts. It will culminate in World War 3 at the end of which nuclear weapons of mass destruction will be used. Along with this there will be a surge in natural disasters.

We have covered the reasons why this is happening and provided more details in our articles :

Needless to say, with the high levels of destruction that will follow, everything including basic commodities will be scarce not only in the coming years but for many years after World War 3. In this article, (which is a part of a series of articles to prepare for the coming times), we will be providing some pointers on how to prepare your house and living space for these adverse times from a power and water perspective.

2. General points to prepare your house for war and natural calamities

Prepare your house for World War 3

Time is now of essence in preparing for the emergencies we may have to face between 2020 – 2023 and for some years after that. Some points to be kept in mind with regards to your house or place of residence are given ahead. It is suggested that one make the requisite changes while one can.

  1. It is better to not start any new construction or buy new property. The reason is that due to natural disasters like earthquakes and landslides, the house or property can get damaged. So, the money invested in making a new house can get wasted. Thus, it is better to stay in the house you are currently living in or to rent a place. In case you have to buy a flat or a house, try to think of which region or state will be a safer option given the present situation in your country.
  2. In case you are buying a flat, it is better to not buy a place above the 3rd floor. This is because in case of an earthquake, it is easier to evacuate a place which is on a lower floor. Also, in the event of a nuclear device being detonated, it is easier to seek refuge at the basement of the building from a lower floor. If one has a flat above the 4th floor, one can see if there is an option of buying a place which is at a lower level. Also, with shortages in electricity predicted, the use of lifts will not be available.
  3. To save oneself from the effect of nuclear radiation, the best locations are underground and in the middle of bigger buildings. The greater the number of thick concrete walls one can have to protect oneself in the event of a detonation from the radiation which spreads in the environment, the better it is.
  4. If the house which one is staying in needs some important repairs to be done, then prioritise it at the earliest. This is because in the event of floods or strong cyclones/hurricanes, it can damage the house further. During extreme weather, houses that are weaker structurally may not hold up and collapse. Also, it may be difficult to repair the house when times go bad.
  5. Do not invest in making the house aesthetically appealing, but rather spend on making it more resilient to extreme weather conditions that can be expected in your area. In the event of a war breaking out in your area or a natural disaster, some parts of the house may get damaged. As a result, if you are investing in renovations for you home only from an aesthetic point of view, you may end up wasting money.
  6. If one has a house in the countryside or a rural area, keep it ready by making arrangements so that it is in a liveable condition and can be used at any time. During a war scenario, cities are likely to be attacked to a greater extent than rural areas. Also, cities are more likely to be affected by riots and crime as compared to rural areas and the countryside. During the coming times, you may need to relocate your residence to the countryside at short notice. Keeping a backup plan for living in the countryside home is advisable.
  7. If any of your family members are temporary residents in a foreign land due to work / studies etc., it is better to ask them to return home due to the uncertainty of the world situation. The way of life as we know it is at great risk of being completely compromised and international travel may not be possible. Currently, due to COVID-19 itself, international travel is difficult. Whatever travel avenues are available, advise family members to take it so that during the unprecedented adverse times that are to follow, the family can be together to support each other.
  8. In the case of the coronavirus pandemic, we witnessed how family members were separated and not allowed to meet because of the illness being highly contagious. In many cases, there was no possibility of saying final goodbyes to loved ones. In the extreme calamitous times to follow, the elderly in a family are the most vulnerable due to having less physical strength, health issues and emotional vulnerability. There is an increased risk of them passing away. It is best that they put all their affairs in order before the times get really bad. This means, making sure you know where all their important documents are and ideally collating them in a safe place and making arrangements (a will) to deal with any unfinished plans about their life, their finances and their wishes. It also includes nominating substitute decision-makers that can step in if they become unable to make decisions for themselves.

3. Prepare to avoid power outages during the upcoming war period using alternative energy resources

During times of emergency caused due to extreme weather or war, power cuts or having no electricity will be very common. The electricity supply from the government will be prone to power outages. It is likely that we could be stuck without electricity for days or even months with no power for even essential or critical needs.

That is why it is important to make arrangements for having an alternative source of generating electricity. When selecting an alternative try to choose an option where there is a steady power supply for a longer duration. Such a source can be beneficial for us not only during an emergency but as a long-term power option.

3.1 Using solar systems at home for better preparedness 

Solar power to prepare for power outages during World War 3

  • Solar power is ideal for places with ample sunlight.
  • When placing solar panels on the roof make sure that it is not in the shade of trees, other buildings, etc.
  • When designing your solar system make sure that it can be used as a either a hybrid or off-grid system. This means that in event of not having any electricity from power lines your home can be powered by batteries (that have been charged using solar energy).
  • Plan for how much electricity you will need and design your solar power system accordingly. Do factor in lower efficiencies from solar power systems during winter and overcast skies.
  • Do consider switching to electric vehicles. Make allowances for charging of such vehicles with your solar power system. This is because there may be limited or no petrol supplies in the coming adverse times.
  • Even you are living in a flat, all the residents can come together and jointly invest in solar panels to be put on the top roof of the building or the common terrace.
  • Buy equipment which has a good energy rating. Having appliances which are energy efficient will help you to conserve precious stored energy during war times.
  • Educated yourself on available government subsidies and rebates for solar power systems in your country and state.
  • Take the help of a solar specialist in designing a system best suited for your electricity needs and area.
  • Invest in portable solar power such as :
    • Stand-alone solar powered lights
    • Solar powered power banks
    • Portable solar panels

3.2 Other household options when power options are scarce

Solar power has limitations if the sky is cloudy. During an emergency, there may be a dearth of fuel so generators may become inoperable. During this time, we can consider the following for light and other energy requirements.

  • Wood fires
  • Electric torches/lanterns (battery and rechargeable)
  • Candles
  • Torches
  • Earthen lamps
  • Kerosene lanterns (if such fuel is available)
  • Generators (if fuel is available or stored)
  • Batteries that can be charged if state run electricity is available intermittently

3.3 Wind energy and other sources of renewable energy

Nenad Kajić / Veneko.hr / CC BY-SA

The overall capacity of all wind turbines installed worldwide by the end of 2019 reached 650.8 Gigawatt, according to statistics presented by the World Wind Energy Association (WWEA). It is important that governments continue to embrace renewable sources of energy because of their vital importance in the coming times.

Portable home wind turbines are becoming increasingly popular. Wind turbines work great when paired with a solar array as it maximises your capacity to produce energy. During the day, the solar panels can soak up the sun’s rays, while your wind turbine can generate power with the gusts of wind in the evening.

3.4 Viability of alternate power systems during a nuclear conflict

Some may question the viability of solar power in the event of a nuclear conflict. The reasons for this are twofold :

  1. Reduction in the sun’s rays reaching the Earth – Even a nuclear conflict of a limited scale will throw up an intense amount of soot, which will blanket the Earth. This will reduce the proportion of solar rays reaching the Earth to a fraction of the normal levels. This will definitely compromise any solar power system’s efficiency.
  2. Nuclear electromagnetic pulse (EMP) – If a nuclear weapon of sufficient size is detonated in the atmosphere, an EMP can disrupt everything that uses electronic circuitry, potentially causing irreversible damage to electronics in cars, airplanes and the electric grid along with one’s home solar system. Even if solar panels themselves may be less compromised by the EMP as they are made to sustain a lightning strike, the electrical circuitry of the solar power system will most likely be affected.

Answer :

  1. Even a nuclear conflict of a limited scale will have a devastating impact on society. If one is staying close to the blast radius, not having electricity will be the least of one’s worries as everyone in the immediate blast radius will perish.
  2. While we have provided solutions such as solar power and wind power, we cannot guarantee that it is something that will continue to work during a nuclear conflict.
  3. In such a scenario, any intellectual discussion about mitigating risk at a physical level may result in a conclusion that would seem very bleak and without any hope.
  4. However, it is important to keep the spiritual aspect in mind when thinking of preparing for the coming times as it is a critical aspect as to whether we survive these times. Regarding this, the following points should be considered.
    1. The happiness and suffering in people’s lives are dictated by their destiny and how they use their free will. The effects of destiny cannot be avoided and have to be undergone. In the years 2019 – 2023, the collective destiny of humanity will also exert a much higher effect on a person’s life. The collective destiny in the current times is very adverse and hence many people will suffer.
    2. Adverse destiny can only be overcome by spiritual practice. However, in the current era, as peoples’ spiritual practice is mostly non-existent, a large proportion of the world’s population will perish.
    3. People who make concerted efforts in spiritual practice (that is as per universal principles) will survive the coming times. The spiritual level of a person will be an important criterion for survival.
    4. People who are of a spiritual level that is above 50% will survive the coming severe times due to the grace of God. Hence, it is important to teach spiritual practice to those who have the potential to take it up. This is so that they will be able to reach the spiritual level of 50%.
    5. Depending on the higher spiritual level of a person, the area around him will be protected by God from the effects of radiation, etc. in the event of a nuclear conflict. Because of this, not only seekers, but plants, animals, etc. in that area will be saved.

4. Water scarcity solutions during war and natural disasters

Water is the most abundant compound on Earth and is essential for life. It exists in liquid, solid and gaseous states. However, freshwater makes up a very small fraction of all water on the planet. While nearly 70 percent of the world is covered by water, only 2.5 percent of it is fresh. The rest is saline, and ocean based. Out of all the freshwater, just 1 percent of it is easily accessible, with much of it trapped in glaciers and snowfields. The fact of the matter is that only 0.007 percent of the planet’s water is available to sustain its 7.4 billion people along with all the animals, birds and plant life. In short, water is a very precious commodity, which apart from drinking needs is used for many other critical activities such as washing, cleaning, sanitation, farming, etc.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that an adequate daily fluid intake is :

  • About 3.7 litres of fluids for men
  • About 2.7 litres of fluids for women

The quality, nutrient content, and availability of water differ throughout the world; variation depends on many things, including climate, location, and the economic status of the country.

In unstructured situations such as war and natural disasters, the availability and quality of water can change drastically. During wartime or other conflicts, water supply systems are very vulnerable to disruption. Destruction of water supply infrastructures (e.g., water mains and treatment facilities), deliberate disconnection of power stations and power lines to water stations, and disruption of the operation and maintenance of water supply systems are among the tactics the opposing side may use to destabilise and harm civilian populations. As we have seen in recent conflicts such as in Iraq and Syria, the civilian population often bears the brunt of the collateral damage of military operations. In the case of a nuclear war, we will also have radioactive pollution to contend with, which will contaminate our water sources.

All this can put large sections of society at risk, where even the minimum required amount of drinking water may not be available. Also, even if water is available to some extent, it could be contaminated with various waterborne diseases. The risk of infectious diseases increases with poor sanitation, limited access to clean water and general malnutrition. The collapse of infrastructure related to sanitation and water can lead to an increased incidence of cholera, dysentery and typhoid fever. Even if local authorities intend to send water tankers to help citizens, due to a shortage of fuel it may not be an option.

With this as background, we have put some points together for our readers to think about to prepare for the coming times.

Water sources and collection

A majority of public water systems are supplied by groundwater and surface water. Surface water includes streams, springs, rivers, canals and lakes. In the event of water shortages due to infrastructure collapse, one will need to consider the alternate water sources given below.

1. Harvested rainwater from roofs

Attribution: SuSanA Secretariat / CC BY

2. Private water wells : Local governmental permissions may need to be obtained to drill a well and specialist help may be required.

3. Use of residential greywater systems : Greywater is wastewater from non-toilet plumbing systems such as hand basins, washing machines, showers and baths. When handled properly, greywater can be safely reused for the garden.

4. Captured condensate: When water vapour in the air (often described as humidity) comes into contact with a colder surface, the water changes from a gas to a liquid and collects onto the cold surface. This water vapour in the air that becomes liquid is referred to as condensate.

Water treatment

Standard water treatment requires clarification (removal of suspended solids and solid particles), filtration, purification and desalinization, as well as routine maintenance and testing for nutritional value, with supplementation when needed.

Another important aspect of waterborne illness prevention is home-based water treatment. Point-of-use water treatment focuses on simple household methods to clean water, such as boiling, bleaching, filtering through a cloth, sediment (sand and gravel) filtration, and ultraviolet light disinfection.

It is said that waterborne diseases would probably kill more survivors of a nuclear attack than would fallout- contaminated water. We suggest starting to carry out your own research on how to make water fit for drinking in case of war in your area where the purity of water may be compromised.

If neither safe water nor chemicals for disinfecting it are available during a crisis, store plenty of the best water at hand, even if it is muddy river water. Most mud settles to the bottom in a few days; even in a crowded shelter there can be ways to boil water. Bringing water to a boil for one minute kills all types of disease-causing bacteria. Boiling for 10 to 20 minutes is required to kill some rarer infective organisms. (Wigner, 1979)

Water storage

If water is treated but not stored in disinfected containers, it can soon become re-contaminated. For long-term storage, it is best to disinfect all water, since even a few organisms may multiply rapidly and give stored water a bad taste or odour. Properly disinfected water remains safe for many years if stored in thick plastic or glass containers that are sealed airtight. For multi-year storage, do not use thin plastic containers, which in time often develop leaks. (Wigner, 1979)

Use water sparingly

Now is the time to start learning how to use water sparingly, not waste this precious resource and reuse it wherever possible. The more you practice this in normal times, the better you will be equipped to sustain yourself during the war times.

Other miscellaneous points about managing water scarcity during war

The following are some practical tips in random order to facilitate conservation and the optimum use of water in the coming adverse times.

  • Buy a long thick rope, bucket, etc. to be able to pull water from a well if electricity and other options fail to pull water.
  • If possible, have a pump which runs on solar power.
  • If you had a well which was drilled some years back and it does not have sufficient water till the rains come every year, then think of re-drilling the well to a deeper level.
  • If you have a borewell for water, see if it can have multiple power supply options – solar power, by hand and also with a pump which runs on electricity. This is so that if one option fails, you can resort to another option.
  • Make sure that the water from the well does not get contaminated due to negligence or lack of care.
  • Have enough large size water tanks (capacity – as per your family’s need) so that water lasts for 10-15 days.
  • Due to a lack of electricity, the standard water purifier can become inoperable, so the alternative is a candle filter.
  • If you have to use muddy water for drinking or cooking, try this option. Get a big vessel and pour the muddy water in it. Let the water rest without stirring it for 24 hours. Then, pour the clean water in another vessel, and you can use a thick muslin cloth to strain the water. Make sure that the muslin cloth is clean and only used for this purpose.
  • There are some bottles available which can clean water automatically. These bottles can be purchased online.
  • There are options to cool water without using electricity by using large earthen water pots which cool water. There are techniques on how to use and maintain earthen pots for water. Refer to Right way to buy, clean and cure a new Earthen pot| 2 tricks to get coldest water from pot.
  • Use water sparingly for all activities.
  • Use drip or spray irrigation for gardens or fields. During summer, cover the plants with a thin wet cloth so that the water does not evaporate very fast.
  • Keep barrels on the terrace or ground to collect rainwater. This water can be used for various purposes.
  • Adopting water efficiency practices accomplishes more with less by using the best available technology and using water in smarter and more innovative ways.

5. ​Bibliography

Wigner, E. P. (1979, May). Nuclear War Survival Skills Chapter 8 : Water. Retrieved from https://www.oism.org/: https://www.oism.org/nwss/s73p919.htm

 

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