President Clinton's Solar Initiative
"We will work with businesses and communities to use the sun's energy to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels by installing solar panels on one million roofs around our nation by 2010."
Vice President Al Gore:
Digital Declaration of Interdependence
"We have a chance to extend knowledge and prosperity to our most isolated inner cities, to the barrios, the favelas, the colonias and our most remote rural villages; to bring 21st Century learning and communication to places that don't even have phone service today; to share specialized medical technology where there are barely enough family doctors today..."
Miracle at Sea: Russian Sailor Saved by Email Doctor
"The e-mail arrived from halfway around the world: A Russian sailor, alone aboard his competition yacht bobbing in the stormy South Atlantic, two scalpels and used gauze scattered about the cabin, wondered if he would die."
President Clinton's Statement on Middle East Development
"For too long, too many young people have turned to terrorism and old hatreds partly because they had nothing better to do. We must give them a different future to believe in. Every step toward opportunity is a step away from violence. Palestinians have a right to the same things all people aspire to: to be part of a normal, even happy, society where children receive a decent education, where there are jobs to go around and decent health care, where people's memories are reconciled with their hopes for the future and there is no fear."
Let there be Light
A low-tech success story from India, in which a simple solar-powered lamp vanquishes a pesky moth and raises the standard of living of a whole village.
Financing Solar Energy in the Developing World
Solar photovoltaic units are cost-effective relative to other available energy sources, far cheaper than grid extension, and profitable for companies to provide. Model projects in several Asian countries and the Caribbean have shown that demand for these systems is high and that rural households can afford them if financing is available.Why, then, aren't private markets rushing to take advantage of the huge opportunity represented by the millions of developing world households that need and could buy these systems?
Million Solar Roofs Initiative
On June 26, 1998, President Clinton announced to the UN Conference on Climate Change, his plans to "unleash the creative power of our people to meet the challenge of climate changes." This national goal would be achieved by his recent endorsement of the Million Roofs Initiative. He began his address by stating that "we will work with businesses and communities to use the sun's energy to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels by installing solar panels on one million roofs around our nation by 2010. Capturing the sun's warmth can help us turn down the Earth's temperature."
The Department of Energy will assume a commanding role in this initiative and will work with partners in the building industry, local governments, state agencies, the solar industry, and other organizations to remove market barriers and strengthen grassroots demand for building applications of solar technologies. President Clinton has asked Secretary of Energy Federico Pena to lead federal agencies in this effort. In response to the President's call, Secretary Pena publicly addressed the initiative and expressed his belief that the Million Solar Initiative can be made a success through a continued working effort with Congress and American Businesses. He stated optimistically "by putting solar cells on the roof, we're going to send solar sales through the roof. We will marshal our considerable resources to reduce greenhouse gas emissions." Pena also noted it will require two important steps: leveraging existing federal resources to promote solar energy sales and working with local communities and other groups to find ways to rapidly expand the use of solar technology.
The Million Solar Roofs Initiative will increase momentum in the U.S. for more widespread use of solar power which in turn will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Increased commercial demand will lower the cost of solar technologies domestically, making them more accessible. The American solar power industry will be in a stronger position to compete against foreign companies for market share in the expanding international renewable energy market. The Initiative will create high-tech jobs, save energy, ensure greater consumer electricity choice, and build on existing momentum in the solar industry. It will also keep U.S. companies competitive against foreign PV producers by enabling U.S. manufacturers to retain their competitive edge.
To stimulate sales of solar energy systems, the Clinton Administration plans to use several existing tools from programs that are explicitly authorized by Congress to utilize energy efficiency, renewable energy and environmental technologies. Such examples include:
* Executive order 12902, signed by President Clinton, calls for the federal government to accelerate the purchase of solar energy power systems for federal buildings. The federal government is the world's largest owner of buildings (over 500,000) and spends more than $3 billion each year in electricity.
* Federal grant programs promoting strategic technology programs within the EPA and the Departments of Commerce, Defense, and Energy could be used to "buy down" costs to make solar applications more affordable.
* Eight federal lending programs administrered by the Small Business Administration, the Departments of Agriculture, Housing and Urban Development, and other federal housing programs could be tapped to make solar energy more affordable to Americans.
Digital Declaration of Interdependence
Remarks by Vice President Al Gore
15TH INTERNATIONAL ITU CONFERENCE
October 12, 1998, Minneapolis, Minnesota
This is the third time in four years I have had the honor of speaking to this distinguished audience. The first time, I traveled 8,000 kilometers from the White House to Buenos Aires. The second time, I spoke to you by way of satellite in Kyoto, and invited you to come here this year. I want to thank all of you for the distance you traveled to be here today, and on behalf of President Clinton and the American people, I want to welcome all of you to the United States of America.
As we gather today to talk about technology and the future, I want to share with you a list I found not long ago in an airline magazine of 31 signs that technology has taken over your life. According to the list, you know technology has taken over your life:
-- If you know your E-mail address, but not your telephone number.
-- If you rotate your computer screen saver more than your tires.
-- If you have never sat through a movie without having at least one electronic device on your body beep or buzz.
-- And my personal favorite, number 23: If Al Gore strikes you as an "intriguing fellow."
I didn't get it.
We meet today in Minnesota: the land of 10,000 lakes, at the very center of North America. One of our great writers, Sinclair Lewis, once wrote that "to understand America, it is merely necessary to understand Minnesota. But to understand Minnesota, you must be an historian, an ethnologist, a poet, and a graduate prophet all in one."
Of course, people might say the same thing about the Global Information Infrastructure -- a network of networks that transmits messages and images at the speed of light and on every continent ultimately linking all human knowledge.
Its creation is so revolutionary -- the changes it has wrought are so vast -- that even those of us who have worked on it for years cannot predict its full impact.
For all the stunning capabilities of the Global Information Infrastructure, we must remember that at its heart it is a way to deepen and extend our oldest, and most cherished global values: rising standards of living and literacy, an ever-widening circle of democracy, freedom, and individual empowerment.
And above all, we must remember that -- especially in this global economy and Information Age -- we are all connected, from Minnesota to Mongolia, from Madrid to Mali.
That is what I want to talk about today. Thanks to the people in this room -- and people listening around the world -- this is truly an open moment in world history, a moment when we can come together across our communications networks to rediscover and renew our shared values and build the 21st century our children deserve.
That is a vision that was not even imaginable back in 1947, when the International Telecommunication Union last met in the United States. That year, two scientists working at Bell Labs, John Bardeen and Walter Brattain, made an amazing discovery. Using a little slab of germanium, a thin plastic wedge, a shiny strip of gold foil, and a make-shift spring fashioned from an old paper clip, they were able to boost an electrical signal by more than 450 times. They called their invention a "transistor."
Incidentally, one of those two scientists -- Walter Brattain -- first learned about quantum mechanics less than five miles from where we meet today, as a doctoral student at the University of Minnesota.
There are now more than half a billion transistors manufactured every second. Every hour, more than a trillion of them are packed into everything from computers to car engines, satellite systems to gas pumps. Within two years, a single microchip will routinely contain one billion transistors, and the patterns etched on them will be as complicated as a road map of the entire planet. Fifty years ago, it cost $5 for every transistor. Today, it costs 1/100th of a cent. In just a few years, it will cost a billionth of a cent.
I once used the old cliche with a college audience that if the automobile had made the same exponential advances as the transistor, a car would get 100,000 miles to the gallon and cost only 50 cents. And then one of the students in the first row said, "Sure, Mr. Vice President, but it would be less than a millimeter long."
These new advances are allowing us to explore new frontiers -- from a galaxy 12 billion light years away to the smallest genetic switch inside a human cell. Within three weeks, the first of several brand new low-earth orbiting satellite systems will make it possible to make a phone call from any point on the earth's surface to any other point. Within three years, we will have high-speed wireless Internet access from anywhere on Earth.
Just two short years ago, the United States was able to land a rover on Mars equipped with an off-the-shelf wireless remote modem -- which prompted more than three-quarters of a billion hits on the Internet when those images were broadcast back to Earth. In the coming months, NASA will work with several of your governments to launch the new international space station, which is the size of two football fields.
At MIT in Boston, researchers are even busy adding a third sensation to virtual reality: not just sight and sound -- but touch. By using an electronic thimble, you can touch an object on a computer screen, and it immediately appears as a hologram next to you. If you run your fingers over it, the object can become rough or smooth -- whatever the computer commands.
It means that in a few short years, the blind will be able to feel a computer image, and armchair tourists will be able to run their hands over the rough sandstone of Stonehenge or the smooth marble of the Taj Mahal.
None of these stunning achievements would have been possible without telecommunications. Thanks to all of you, we know that today, we are at the dawn of a new technology and telecommunications renaissance, one that is still in its infancy.
But perhaps the greatest promise of this electronic and digital age lies not in what is new, but in the values that are renewed.
As each breathtaking new development brings us closer together in communication, and in common cause -- building a true global electronic village -- we have chance to spread a new prosperity, a new literacy, a new love of freedom and democracy -- and even a new sense of community to the farthest regions of the world.
That is why, four years ago, I set forth five principles that I believe are essential to reap the full harvest of the Global Information Infrastructure. Those five principles were: private investment, competition, open access, flexible regulatory framework, and universal service.
These are not just common principles, but common values we all need to strengthen. I am heartened to report enormous progress on all five.
First, we have encouraged private investment, because private investment is the lifeblood of innovation. Today, we see the results -- over $600 billion of private capital has been invested in telecommunications since 1994. More than 48 telecom operators have been privatized. I invite any remaining doubters to go back to Buenos Aires and ask Argentina how well privatization works -- just since we met there they have gone from four million telephone lines to more than 18 million. Not only is their privatized system more efficient and more profitable -- it is bringing an entire generation of Argentineans closer together.
Second, we have promoted competition, because competition leads to innovation, better services, and better prices for consumers.
In 1994, only seven countries had competitive markets for basic voice service. Today, 47 countries either have full competition or are committed to it. One of those is South Africa, which last year decided to license a second cellular operator. And in just one year, the number of subscribers jumped from 40,000 to 340,000.
Here in the United States, we have also taken broad steps to promote competition as well.
Since 1996, when we signed a landmark telecommunications law that advances all five principles, the birth of dozens of new competitors has raised $20 billion to invest in advanced communications, and created over 50,000 jobs. Now, we need competition between fiber-optic cables around the globe, especially with the stunning expansion of broad-band capacity. The bottom line is: competition works if we let it.
Third, we have made open access a priority, because open access guarantees that every user of the GII will be able to reach thousands of different sources of information from every country, in every language. Today, the Internet is turning that goal into a reality. Here in the United States, it took radio 38 years to reach 50 million people, personal computers 16 years, and television 13 years. The Internet took only four years.
Today, there are 100 million Internet users. By the year 2000, there will be 320 million. Maintaining open access means that we will speed up the day when every child in any village or city is able to reach across a keyboard and reach every book ever written, every song ever composed, and every painting ever painted.
We have seen the dramatic benefits of open access to the telephone network. Similarly, as new technologies emerge, open access will increase competition and deliver great benefits to users and service providers alike. The ITU's role in setting standards is crucial to this goal.
Experience has shown that competition among multiple standards is the best way to meet users' diverse needs -- as long as each individual standard is designed to increase, and not reduce the potential for interoperability.
Fourth, we have worked toward a flexible regulatory framework, because it promotes competition and investment while protecting consumers.
A growing list of nations agree: over the past four years, 18 independent regulatory agencies have been established in the Americas, 17 in Africa, and 11 in the Asia Pacific region. I was pleased to see 58 nations recently commit to the World Trade Organization's Reference Paper on Regulatory Principles.
I want to commend one of them -- OSIPTEL of Peru -- which recently moved to promote competition by ending Telefonica's monopoly one year ahead of schedule.
Fifth, we have promoted universal service to basic telecommunications services, because the ability to pick up a phone or hook up a computer and have instant access to your village, your nation, and your world is one of the most liberating and empowering forces in human history, and it should be available to all people.
Since 1994, the principle of universal access has led to more than 200 million phone lines being added. For example, China is installing 14.5 million lines per year -- equal to half of Britain's entire network.
This isn't just a story of numbers and statistics, but families and faces. In Thailand, a group of students with disabilities use the Flying Wheelchair Bulletin Board to talk to other students with disabilities around the world.
They have been amazed to learn about legislation passed in other countries to help the disabled become full members of society -- and now they are trying to raise awareness at home. In Longbeach, Australia, a woman named Christine Chapel lives on a sheep ranch in the Australian outback.
By telecommuting through the GII, she recently earned a bachelor's degree at a university more than 1,500 kilometers from her home.
Thanks to the work we set in motion four years ago, the structure for the Global Information Infrastructure is largely in place. The information superhighways of many nations are beginning to take shape. Now more than ever before, we must all decide where they will lead.
My message to you is simple: today, on the eve of a new century and a new millennium, we have an unprecedented opportunity to use these powerful new forces of technology to advance our oldest and most cherished values.
We have a chance to extend knowledge and prosperity to our most isolated inner cities, to the barrios, the favelas, the colonias and our most remote rural villages; to bring 21st Century learning and communication to places that don't even have phone service today; to share specialized medical technology where there are barely enough family doctors today; to strengthen democracy and freedom by putting it on-line, where it is so much harder for it to be suppressed or denied. Today, we are more connected than ever before. Now, let us use our new tools and technology to build on that interdependence -- to build a stronger global community, and make real our common values.
Today, I want to pose five great challenges that still remain to be met.
Together, they make up a Digital Declaration of Interdependence that can create a brighter world for us all.
* First, we must improve access to technology so everyone on the planet is within walking distance of voice and data telecommunications services within the next decade.
Right now, 65 percent of the world's households have no phone service. Half of the world's population has never made a phone call. Iceland has more Internet hosts than all of Africa. Today, I challenge the business community to create a global business plan -- to put data and voice telecommunication within an hour's walk of everybody on the planet by the end of the next decade. This plan should include ways to stimulate demand. It should involve local business. It should allow for access to distance learning and telemedicine. It should provide hands-on training. We know it can be done -- and it must be done.
* Second, we must overcome our language barriers and develop technology with real-time digital translation so anyone on the planet can talk to anyone else.
Just imagine what it would be like to pick up a phone, call anywhere in the world, and have your voice translated instantly so you could have a conversation without language being a barrier. Just imagine if the translation many of you are receiving through your earphones here today could be accomplished digitally and instantly. I can see the day when we have a true digital dialogue around the world -- when a universal translator can instantly shatter the language barriers that so often hold us back in this global and Information age.
Imagine also a world where computers don't need keyboards, where you can simply speak into your p.c., and have every word perfectly translated and typed. Imagine how much it could reduce the cost of doing business, and increase international cooperation. Imagine if there were no barriers between basic literacy and computer literacy -- where any person who can speak can operate a computer and tap into the world's information simply by speaking into a small device.
Today, I want to challenge the research community: take these discoveries and develop new technology that allows people around the world to communicate with each other; that makes international cooperation easier; and that allows people to participate in our global community without losing their linguistic and cultural heritage.
* Third, we must create a Global Knowledge Network of people who are working to improve the delivery of education, health care, agricultural resources, and sustainable development -- and to ensure public safety.
Just imagine what it would be like if a sick child in rural Mongolia could be linked through videoconference to the Sydney Children's Hospital. A small sensor, like a mouse, could broadcast x-rays or an MRI back to Australia. A blood sample could be put on a slide and scanned for sickle cell anemia. A leading doctor could prescribe treatment -- and the tests would be waiting when the child arrived. Within a few short years, this technology can be in our hands.
In an age when information is everywhere, we should be able to find ways to group information by need.
Just think if every farmer in Africa could tap into a local weather channel that provides them with the information they need to plant and rotate their crops. And in natural disasters, we know that just an hour's advance warning can save thousands of lives.
Today, some of the most forward-thinking companies are using new "knowledge management" techniques that share best practices and take advantage of accumulated knowledge. Today, I issue a challenge to the education community to use these same techniques to link practitioners, experts, and nonprofit organizations that are working on our most pressing social and economic needs.
For example, in the world today, five billion people don't have access to secondary and higher education. If we can create a "knowledge network" that extends distance learning around the globe, we can quadruple the number of people who have access to higher education and lifelong learning.
* Fourth, we must use communications technology to ensure the free-flow of ideas and support democracy and free speech.
Four years ago in Buenos Aires, I said that the GII would promote democracy and greatly increase people's participation in decision-making, by making available the information they need to express their speech freely.
Self-government is built on the assumption that each citizen should have the power to control his or her own life.
More than five centuries ago, this concept was alive in Europe -- but it didn't become functionally possible until the printing press helped to widely spread a large body of shared civic knowledge to an informed and engaged public.
Just as the printing press delivered that knowledge 500 years ago, I believe the GII can deliver a new wave of civic knowledge -- comprehensive enough to strengthen the capacity for self-government everywhere. The continuing challenge to all of us -- governmental and non-governmental organizations alike -- is not to tell other nations what to do, or what values to pursue, but rather to empower people to recognize and act upon their own choices. We must continue to work to ensure that the GII promotes the free-flow of ideas and supports democracy around the globe.
* Fifth, we must use communication technology to expand economic opportunity to all families and communities around the globe. Everyone in every part of the world should have the opportunity to succeed if they are willing to work for it.
In a remote farming village near Chincehros, Peru, life has changed more in the past two years than in the previous half century. In 1996, an Internet service provider set up a Net-link for 50 peasant families. The village leaders formed an on-line partnership with an international export company, which arranged for its vegetables to be shipped and sold in New York. Before e-mail, the village's income was about $300 a month. Today, it has jumped to $1,500 a month.
Across the globe, micro-enterprise -- which often starts with initial loans of as little as $50 -- has been a path out of poverty for millions. Today, there are more than 500 million micro-entrepreneurs -- like those Peruvian farmers who eke out an existence by selling their wares and service to their immediate communities.
There are countless micro-entrepreneurs whose quality of life and incomes would change dramatically overnight if they had access to the same tools.
Today, I challenge the non-profit community to work with development organizations to provide more of these opportunities. These networks will create jobs and enable micro-entrepreneurs to avoid a middle-man and keep more of their profits.
Some estimate that global electronic commerce will grow to more than $300 billion per year in just a few years. By the year 2010, we can triple the number of people who are able to support themselves and their families because they are able to reach world markets through the Internet. It will also help give consumers access to a whole new world of goods and services.
Today, I want to announce two additional steps our government will be taking to increase opportunity and empower micro-entrepreneurs across the globe. First, I am pleased to announce today that our Peace Corps has committed to make technology and communications an increasingly important strategic tool in the work of Peace Corps volunteers.
Before Peace Corps volunteers go into the field, the Peace Corps will make sure they have the know-how to enable people to use technology to gain information, improve education, and enhance economic development. Whenever possible, the Peace Corps will also help increase access to telecommunications in the communities it serves.
Second, I am proud to announce that USAID will lead a new initiative to promote Internet access and electronic commerce for development in eight countries. This initiative will go hand-in-hand with legal and regulatory reforms aimed at liberalization and universal access, to stimulate new businesses through electronic commerce, and demonstrate applications in democracy and governance, economic growth, environment, education, and medical assistance.
This initiative will build on the Leland initiative, a $15 million effort to provide 21 African countries with support for Internet connections.
This is our Digital Declaration of Interdependence -- five challenges that can strengthen our global community for the 21st Century.
Before I conclude, I want to say a special word about how we must work together to avoid the Year 2000 computer problem -- which could stall much of our progress in international telecommunications if we do not mount a major, worldwide, public and private crusade to fix it.
Today, we potentially have hundreds of millions of computers and devices that literally cannot read the year "2000."
This means that when the clock strikes midnight on January 1, 2000, everything from air traffic control to water systems, heart monitors to nuclear power plants could be affected.
Here in the United States, we have a major effort underway to cope with the challenge. Within the White House, we are pursuing a top-priority, high-level initiative to make sure our national government is prepared.
But in an era of global interdependence, there is a shared global responsibility to meet the challenge.
And I say to every single company, and every single nation, that has benefited from global trade, and global telecommunications: just as you have shared the benefits of this global and Information Age, you have an obligation to help shoulder this critical burden.
All of our economies will be hurt if the Year 2000 problem is not solved in time. One weak link in the system will weaken us all. I appreciate the work being done by our Federal Communication Commission and the ITU on this issue -- but we have more work to do. Let us meet the Year 2000 challenge together, so we can begin the 21st Century with confidence, and without computer problems. Our ambassadors are ready to work with you and provide any technical assistance you need. Together, we must solve this problem.
Throughout this millennium, the story of human achievement has been a story of wonder, a story of discovery, a story of imagination, but also of a story of courage -- to try new things, to believe in what we can't see, and to boldly follow wherever the road may take us.
Today, that road of discovery is a highway of light and speed to connect the largest city to the smallest village across the globe. In a world once limited by borders and geography, the only limits we face today are the borders of our imagination. More than any other time in our history, the promise of new discovery and new technology has made it possible to renew and strengthen our oldest and most cherished values.
As we move into a new century and a new millennium, let us take that same sense of wonder, that same sense of discovery, and that same sense of courage to make real the values that centuries of human experience have aspired to create -- to end suffering, to eradicate disease, to promote freedom, to educate our children, and to lift our families and our nations up.
We don't have a moment to waste. Because our children and our world are waiting. Thank you.
Alone at Sea,
Sailor Operates on Himself
Yacht Racer Helped by Boston Physician
Communicating Via Satellite E-Mail
By Pamela Ferdinand
Special to The Washington Post
Wednesday, November 18, 1998; Page A01
BOSTON, Nov. 17, 1998
The e-mail arrived from halfway around the world: A Russian sailor, alone aboard his competition yacht bobbing in the stormy South Atlantic, two scalpels and used gauze scattered about the cabin, wondered if he would die.
"Have been sitting on the bloody cabin floor almost completely naked . . . watching as my life drop by drop leave me," Victor Yazykov typed on his keyboard last Thursday.
Yazykov, a former Russian commando and now a solo sailor, had sailed two months earlier out of Charleston, S.C., in one of the world's most difficult sailing tests, and was still 400 miles from Cape Town, his next port of call. His elbow had become infected and he had been forced to perform makeshift surgery on himself, winding a tight tourniquet around his arm. But the bleeding wouldn't stop.
At his office here at the New England Medical Center, physician Daniel Carlin knew something was going terribly wrong. Since the previous Tuesday, Carlin had been communicating with Yazykov by satellite e-mail about his injury and how to treat it. He had sent Yazykov step-by-step instructions on how to slice into his elbow and drain a life-threatening abscess. But clearly the sailor had forgotten to tell him some key piece of information.
"The stakes were very high," Carlin recalled in a telephone interview today. "He was in an ocean with a lot of wind and waves. Losing his arm would have been a disaster."
In the end, Carlin was able to instruct his distant patient on how to stop his bleeding, and Yazykov -- still competing in the ambitious solo race -- arrived safely in Cape Town on the tip of South Africa on Monday, ahead of four of his competitors and happy to be alive. Yazykov and Carlin spoke for the first time this morning by telephone, patched together by South African radio reporting on the remarkable long-distance surgery.
It was an experience unlike any other for Carlin, a 39-year-old emergency specialist who founded World Clinic Inc. to provide at-a-distance health care through modern telecommunications. Usually his firm's clients call for something like a pharmacy in Portugal that carries yeast infection medication, he said.
This was different.
Electronic correspondence flew back and forth for days between Carlin, typing from the shelter of his medical office, and Yazykov, responding through an emergency solar-powered satellite communication system in a turbulent vessel northwest of Cape Town with no land in sight. The Russian could type only by day, and then just a paragraph at a time once an hour on an English keyboard, said Carlin, who spent sleepless nights worrying about his patient.
The series of e-mail messages, reported here without Yazykov's spelling errors, tells the story of a dramatic rescue at sea.
The messages began Nov. 10 as Yazykov approached the end of the first leg of the Around Alone Race. Carlin was the sailors' "on call" physician.
"My right elbow does not look good. Some yellow spot in the middle of red, and it feels like dead," Yazykov typed. Ominously, he added, "Waiting for your help."
Carlin messaged back that it could be an infection, but that he needed more information.
"All skin is glossy and shiny white," Yazykov wrote the next morning when his communications system could again transmit. "It is like a pillow with some liquid inside."
He said he was not in pain. But the description gave Carlin cause for alarm.
Yazykov had injured his elbow at the beginning of the race but, despite the worsening symptoms, he remained calm and rational. Perhaps because he did not realize that an abscess could kill him if it burst under the skin. Or perhaps, Carlin surmised, because he had once been a member of the Russian Special Forces in Afghanistan.
Carlin served as a volunteer doctor in Pakistan in 1988. Now, he said, two men who had been on opposite sides of a war came together by computer at sea.
"I needed him to do surgery on himself, and I didn't want him to be afraid," Carlin recalled. "I really just stuck to the facts. I told him what we had to do to fix the arm, and he had already drawn the same conclusion. This guy is no stranger to pain."
With four hours to go until sunset in the South Atlantic and the onset of Yazykov's communications blackout, Carlin sent him 13 steps of instructions on how to operate on his arm.
The World Clinic had supplied all the sailing competitors with medical instruments, including two sterile scalpels, latex gloves, iodine, surgical scrub and some cotton gauze. Some competitors also had satellite telephones. But Yazykov could not afford that. So instead, he took the solar-powered device for beaming e-mail messages ashore.
Carlin's step-by-step instructions on self-surgery got through -- shortly before the transmission went dead for the night.
On Thursday, Yazykov said he had successfully punctured the abscess, but could not stop the bleeding. Nor could he move the fingers of his right hand.
They had reached the lowest point of their ordeal. Yazykov, who never asked to be evacuated from his boat, was counting drops of blood and measuring the time he had left to live. Carlin sent him some questions and stayed up all night not knowing what had gone wrong.
The next morning, Yazykov wrote that he had previously taken some aspirin to ease the pain of his injured elbow. Not realizing that aspirin thins blood and inhibits clotting, he had wrapped a tight cord around his arm to stop the bleeding, and his fingers went numb.
Carlin immediately sent back an e-mail telling him to remove the tourniquet and apply direct pressure to the wound. The bleeding stopped, and Yazykov has since reported only minor weakness in his thumb and forefinger. He is expected to make a full recovery.
"The arm getting better," he wrote Carlin on Sunday. "Very grateful to doctor."
© Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT
AT CONFERENCE TO SUPPORT
MIDDLE EAST PEACE AND DEVELOPMENT
For Immediate Release November 30, 1998; 10:48 A.M. EST
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
The State Department
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you very much, Secretary Albright, and thank you for your work for peace in the Middle East. Chairman Arafat, welcome back to the United States. We're delighted to see you. I think it's fair to say that both of us have had more sleep than we had had the last time we met at the Wye Plantation, and I'm delighted to have a chance to meet with Chairman Arafat this morning.
I thank all the representatives who are here from Israel, the other countries of the Middle East -- of course, the Norwegian delegation, the European Union, our friends from Asia, and Mr. Wolfensohn from the World Bank, and others.
Let me first of all say I had a good meeting with Chairman Arafat this morning. We reviewed both the progress made by both sides since the Wye memorandum was signed and the essential next steps on the road to peace, including the task of this conference: stimulating Palestinian economic growth. Chairman Arafat reaffirmed his pledge to uphold his side of the agreement and to work with Israeli authorities to promote Israel's security. I promised the continuing support of the United States as we move ahead in the next phase of the peace process. That phase begins today with this conference.
Today our purpose is to send a clear signal that this peace is more than a piece of paper; that the promise imagined at Oslo can become a concrete reality -- a true peace, a growing peace, good for Palestinians, good for Israelis, good for the region and the world. There are roughly 50 international states and organizations represented here this morning. Most of you have traveled a great distance. I thank you for your persistence and for your generosity. We must convince those who have invested so much in this process that it was a sound investment.
We must look at Gaza and the West Bank in a new light, not as battlegrounds, but as energetic places at the crossroads in the Middle East, endowed with well-educated populations, strongly supported by the Palestinian community around the world, ripe for further development once investors see that the peace agreement truly is taking hold.
For too long, too many young people have turned to terrorism and old hatreds partly because they had nothing better to do. We must give them a different future to believe in. Every step toward opportunity is a step away from violence. Palestinians have a right to the same things all people aspire to: to be part of a normal, even happy, society where children receive a decent education, where there are jobs to go around and decent health care, where people's memories are reconciled with their hopes for the future and there is no fear.
Despite our best efforts since 1993, an honest assessment would lead us to the conclusion that we have not realized all our intentions. There has been too little tangible improvement in the lives of the Palestinian people. Per capita income is down. Unemployment is too high. Living conditions are extremely difficult.
At the outset of the next phase of the peace process, we must candidly acknowledge that we have to change these circumstances. No peace stands a chance of lasting if it does not deliver real results to ordinary people. Our challenge today, therefore, is to do more to deliver these results and to do it sooner rather than later.
I would like to make just a few more points before I let you move on to the business at hand. First, peace is built on compromise, and with any compromise, it is important to address the genuine needs of both parties. Both sides have made sacrifices to get where we are, including at the recent Wye Summit. Both have taken steps since then to keep the process moving forward.
There have been bumps in the road, to be sure, but the agreement is on track, and we must keep it on track. By our words and our actions, we must keep lending our support, anticipating problems before they arise, encouraging the parties to uphold their commitments, building confidence in both the Palestinian and Israeli people through sustained external support. These will be my goals when I visit the region in two weeks.
Second, we must persuade private organizations and individuals to join governments in deepening investments in the region. While public assistance can jump-start development, ultimately the private sector holds the key. There must be greater investment of private resources in Gaza and the West Bank. Each vote of confidence makes the infrastructure a little stronger. Each investment makes previous investments more likely to succeed. It is good economic policy, and it's the right thing to do.
Third, I am convinced for this peace to be real and lasting, it must be regional. Trade and investment must flourish throughout the Middle East, between the Arab world and Palestinians, and also between the Arab world and Israelis. There can be no road different from this that leads to a just and lasting peace.
Many nations here have contributed significant resources already, including Norway, Saudi Arabia, Japan, the nations of the EU, and others. We saw a concrete result last week with the opening of the new airport in Gaza, built with international assistance, a powerful symbol of the Palestinian people's connection to the rest of the world.
Institutions like the World Bank are helping too, ensuring that donor pledges are matched with broad development strategies. The United States has been proud to support these efforts and will continue to do so. The Middle East is profoundly important to our country for all our citizens who love peace, stability, and the kindness of neighbor to neighbor -- virtues that can be found in every faith that trace their roots to the Holy land.
Today I want to announce that I intend to work closely with our Congress on developing a package to provide an additional $400 million to assist the Palestinian people -- funds to help create jobs, improve basic education, enhance access to water, support the rule of law. This amount is in addition to the regular annual contribution provided by the United States, which will reach $100 million next year.
A great deal remains to be done, but I urge you to remember how much can be accomplished in just a year. At the beginning of 1998, Northern Ireland was dominated by its divisions -- how they were drawn and who was on what side. Today the most important dividing line is whether one believes in the past or the future. Through courageous decisions and a steady tide of investment, the people there are seeing peace grow from wish to fulfillment. Prosperity there, too, is the key to making it happen.
A breakthrough occurred at the Wye Summit because the parties decided to look forward, not backward, to focus on the need for security and on tangible economic benefits like the Gaza Airport, the future seaport, the safe passage between Gaza and the West Bank, the Gaza Industrial Estate, which may provide employment for up to 20,000 Palestinians. All these will enable the predictable movement of people and goods, crucial to building a healthy investment climate. Every economy needs a chance to breathe. These steps will provide good breathing room.
All of you here today know how important your work is. Too many lives have already been lost in the Middle East, from prime ministers to simple passers-by who became random victims of the burning hatred. Today you help again to change this dynamic. Today you know we have the best chance for peace there in our lifetimes.
By building prosperity in Gaza and in the West Bank, by promoting regional economic cooperation, by giving young Palestinians a chance to channel their dreams into positive opportunities, you lay the groundwork for a peace that will last not for a year or a lifetime, but for generations to come. We are honored to have you in the United States and we wish you well in this important endeavor.
Thank you very much.
Let there be Light
A low-tech success story powered by solar energy
The red-headed hairy caterpillar destroys more than 50% of the leaf crops in 5 central States in India, affecting about 28,000 poor village farming communities.
The moth starts to come out of the ground during the second week of the monsoon season, just as the crops are starting to appear above the ground, and continues to eat every green, leafy plant it finds for the next 5-6 weeks. The female lays its 125-1250 eggs on water, then dies 7-10 days after coming from the ground.
A light trap was designed to try and kill the moth before it had had time to mate and lay eggs, or to immediately attract the moth to the water in the trap as soon as it had mated. The trap consists of a medium-sized baby bathtub with 3 inches of water in the bottom, with a teaspoon of washing detergent mixed into the water, to lower the surface tension. When the moth tries to land on the water, it falls through the film and drowns.
A solar-powered lantern is mounted 18-24 inches above the baby bath to attract the moths to the trap, sitting on the ground. The light is designed to stay on for 4-6 hours nightly. Total cost of each light trap is 4900 rupees ($125 US).
A solar powered street light is set up in the test village as an early warning system for the farmers to see when the moths are out; then they all run to their fields and switch on the light traps.
The test was conducted on 100 acres within a 1200 acre parcel of village farms. Each light trap protected approx 2.2 acres. 75 light traps were supplied.
60 traps were used in the fields, and 15 were kept for backup purposes. The farmers were also given a crude-looking paddle similar to a pingpong paddle to swat the moths that were not going into the water. The kids became very good at swatting the moths after the first week.
The moths arrived on time and the slaughter began -- and average of 73 moths per trap on the first night, and an average of 53 moths per trap for the duration of the 7 week period before the moths stopped coming.
After harvest, the test area had 53% better yield from the same crops as their neighbours. And the people had a solar light they could use in their houses until next season. Their wives had a baby bath for bathing their children for the next 10 months.
The farmer had enough food to feed himself and his family, and he was able sell about 50 % of his crop for cash. His move out of survival subsistance farming had begun. He now had cash to buy additional fertilizer and pay for the solar powered light trap
reported by Peter McKenzie, Greenstar Board member
Financing Household Solar Energy
in the Developing World
A Report based on a Workshop
at the Pocantico Conference Center
of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund
October 11-13, 1995
Michael F. Northrop, Peter W. Riggs, Frances A. Raymond
Introduction to the report:
As the 21st century nears, some two billion people -- 70 percent of the population in the developing world -- still rely on kerosene, fuel wood, and batteries for light and power. In these 400 million households, noxious fumes are a serious health risk; families are prevented from engaging in home-based income-earning activities after dark; and children who are unable to do homework at night are handicapped in school. The lure of bright lights draws millions of these people each year to already overcrowded cities.
Many governments have responded to rural needs with aggressive electrification programs, only to find they cannot afford the massive power plants required or the cost of running wires (at $10,000 per km) to the thousands of villages that are off the electrical grid. Even if the grid could be extended to rural communities, most end-users would not be able to afford the monthly tariffs for electricity. And extending traditional fossil fuel-based electrification to all those households would exacerbate global climate change and produce dangerous levels of acid rain and pollution.
Household solar power systems represent a clean, climate-friendly alternative for rural electrification. During the past five years, remarkable advances have been made in the economics and technology of solar cells. Costs have declined by more than two-thirds, and solar cell efficiency has more than doubled.
Given these improvements, the widespread use of household solar units (which can operate several fluorescent lights, a television, and a small appliance for up to four hours) is now a viable option. Solar photovoltaic units are cost-effective relative to other available energy sources, far cheaper than grid extension, and profitable for companies to provide. Model projects in several Asian countries and the Caribbean have shown that demand for these systems is high and that rural households can afford them if financing is available.
Why, then, aren't private markets rushing to take advantage of the huge opportunity represented by the millions of developing world households that need and could buy these systems?
There are several reasons, but perhaps most important is the fact that no market infrastructure yet exists to handle the required capital flows. The current infrastructure, which supports the construction of multimillion-dollar power installations, relies on single-point lending and investment (where all the financing activity converges around a single large project); it is not an appropriate model for financing the purchases of small, inexpensive solar systems by millions of widely dispersed rural households.
Although model projects have demonstrated several appropriate delivery mechanisms for getting credit and solar household units to rural end-users, these relatively modest success stories have not been sufficient to raise the confidence of traditional investors.
The full report is available at ftp://solstice.crest.org/pub/renewables/solar/financing_solar_development.txt