Glastonbury, for those who’ve not been, is a massive annual music festival in the UK that encompasses 175,000 people on 900 acres of land. And it tends to rain. A lot. Keeping in touch with your friends is no mean feat, especially if your phone should die on you. This year will be different.
Orange, one of the top mobile phone companies in Europe, has partnered up with GotWind, a company known for its DIY wind power kits, to create the Recharge Pod. This structure will combine wind and solar power to charge up to 100 phones an hour. According to Orange, the power generated will be the equivalent of running a dj booth for 88 hours!
This is actually the second iteration of this charge station, with an eye for bigger, broader uses at future festivals. But I think that their value lies far beyond the festivals themselves, as it will give a tangible, everyday use for something that for some may have considered esoteric or irrelevant for their needs and lives. Even if people don’t make use of the Recharge Pod, it will definitely initiate conversation that wouldn’t have happened otherwise. At 7 meters tall, bright orange, it will be hard to miss.
Gotwind, the technological partner on this endeavor, is an interesting story in itself. Initiated by Ben Jandrell as a place to share his knowledge in making small scale renewable energy products, it has since turned into a hub for people everywhere to share their knowledge, and to get kits to make their own personal power sources. Combine exposure at Glastonbury with the capability for people to do something about their new found interest, and you’ve got something powerful here. Bonnaroo, Coachella, you listening?
Readers: What other ways do you know of or think would be a good idea to introduce renewable energy to the masses?
Paul Smith is a sustainable business innovator, the founder of GreenSmith Consulting, and has an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio School of Management in San Francisco. His overarching talent is “bottom lining” complex ideas, in a way that is understandable and accessible to a variety of audiences, internal and external to a company.