In Remote Regions, Clinics on Camels Save the Day


Camels might be considered invasive creatures destroying the countryside and intimidating the locals in Australia,  but in Africa these nomadic animals are seen in a much more positive light. For years, organizations such as the Nomadic Communities Trust (NCT) have relied on camels to transport medicine and supplies to remote locales.

And now the camels are going solar. NCT, in partnership with Princeton University and The Art College of Design in California, have created solar-powered mini-fridges that strap to the camel’s back.

Featuring an ergonomic bamboo saddle, folding solar panels and a foot powered backup system, these solar powered mini-fridges can store vaccines and other medicines desperately needed in remote areas located off the power grid.

Once in the field, the solar panels will used not only to power the refrigeration systems but also to provide light at mobile clinic locations.

Currently being tested in Ethiopia and Kenya, it is hoped that these eco-friendly, camel-friendly solar powered mini-fridges will be in widespread use by 2010.

Image: Tambako the Jaguar