SOLEDO – The Empathic Currency

The greatest part of the World population does not know what is the average amount of energy that every individual in the world needs every day.
Big corporations of the nuclear and fossil fuels sectors, that produce electricity through polluting and dangerous energy sources, use the media to transmit misleading promotional messages in order to stop people from thinking too much about this issues:
“Energy is not your problem!” – “We will take care of it!” – “Consume energy and develop your activities without worries!”
If we use a realistic key of lecture that puts in relation the energy needs with the per capita income calculated in three geo-politically different areas of the World, the reality is much more worrying, both in entropic and economic terms.
We illustrate below the model of comparison between the ways of life and the energy consumptions of citizens of the European Union, of US and of the South of the World with the related annual average incomes.
Table 1
We live in a strongly unequal social-economic frame model, where the average daily consumptions of energy of a EU-US citizen are worth more than three times the daily incomes of 4.3 billion people (71,6% of the World population).
Table 2
Table 3
Table 4
To put this in percentage, the inequality in annual economic incomes between western industrialized countries and the South of the World is of 10 to 1 (I.I.C. – Income Inequality Critical).
The same incidence (10 to 1) is shown also by the comparison of annual average incomes and annual average cost of energy produced with nuclear and fossil fuels.
The present energy model – cost-intensive, polluting, and obsolete for what concerns the technologies and the efficiency in energy conversion – will NEVER consent to sustain an economic and energy development, fundamental for the full achievement of human, social and democratic rights in the South of the World (E.I.C. – Energy Inequality Critical).
We need a sharp shift in our path, that can bring both a democratic and sustainable energy revolution through Renewable Energy Sources and the valorization of local resources in the South of the World.
Soledo is the way to join these needs with the capacity of using the Sun as a democratic source of energy that belongs to everyone.
Soledo will represent for Rural Communities in the South of the World the tool to achieve full self-determination, both in a social and in an economic way, through a process of individual and collective responsibilization in the Communities that participate to the project.
SOLEDO is an “empathic currency” that takes his value from a proposal of exchange between energy – produced by photovoltaic plants – and a series of goods – including handcrafted products, agricultural products, food and/or an agreement for the provision of hospitality services.
Everything will be carried out under the operative coordination of CETRI-TIRES and granted of the Local Institutions (Municipalities) involved in the project.
SOLEDO is converted by CETRI-TIRES through the SOLEDO BANK, with an exchange ratio of 1/1 with Renewable Watts produced by stand alone photovoltaic plants.
1 SOLEDO = 1 Wp = 1 WR (Renewable Watt, so named by CETRI-TIRES)
In the process of conversion the average international weighed price per Watt of Photovoltaic technology utilized by industries and commercial operators (in mounting kits, installation not included) stand alone typology (plants equipped with storage systems optimized for areas that lack of electric grids).
CETRI-TIRES Scientific Committee can vaunt consolidated reletionships with the most important industrial districts that produce Photovoltaic components; these relationships have been set up through market researches during the years and with cooperation with international university research centers.
These privileged relationships can ensure the access to competitive price lists, in a logic of short supply chain where there’s no room for intermediations unsustainable to the project’s development.
Today the purchase of a high-quality stand alone Photovoltaic plant of about 1.000 Wp in mounting kit (modules, inverter, accessories, electric cables, electric panels, batteries for storage) costs about 3.000 USD (average weighed cost calculated by CETRI-TIRES Scientific Committee – 31 October 2012).
Dividing the cost (3.000 USD) by the output power (1.000 Wp) we obtain a value of 3,00 USD per Watt (average cost per Watt).
Such average cost will be then converted, through the local offices of SOLEDO BANK, in hours of work necessary for the production of the goods included in a bundle of reference (hospitality, local food, handcrafted goods, etc.) made available by local communities and given as a countervalue for the technologies provided.
The economic evaluation for the production of the goods included in the bundle that are given in exchange for the technologies received is evaluated in equivalent hours of work and is carried out by CETRI-TIRES Scientific Committee in compliance with social, economic and cultural equity for the people and with attention for the sustainability of the ratio work hours/cost of energy.
CETRI-TIRES therefore proposes a model of economic and social equity based on a conversion ENERGY/GOODS not linked to strong currencies (EURO, US DOLLARS, YEN, YUAN) as a mean of exchange, but based on the equivalent HOURS OF WORK necessary for the production of the goods contained in a bundle of reference (hospitality, local food, handcrafted products, etc.). This allows the construction of a new economic paradigm where social justice and respect of human dignity are a resource – rather than a problem.
SOLEDO is a contract-currency emitted by CETRI-TIRES through HUMANITARIAN ASSOCIATIONS – NGOs – ONLUS (named “local offices” of SOLEDO BANK) to cover the financing of the interventions described in detail in the plan of energy needs of the related Municipality (preliminary energy and social plan).
Graphic elaboration of SOLEDO:
To achieve the application of these principles a thorough sociologic and energy study of the context in which the intervention is being made, with the operative support of local offices of SOLEDO BANK and of the Municipality. The projectual choices will take into account the study of the climate, of solar irradiation, of the logistics and of the social organization of the Community.
The project will be structured in order to ensure that the realization and the maintenance of the Photovoltaic plants will be carried out using also local resources and workforce. This will lead to professional and social growth of local operators (technicians, craftsmen, farmers), and the spreading of Photovoltaic technologies in the neighboring realities.
CETRI-TIRES Scientific Committee, after having received the basic information for the planning of the necessary Photovoltaic installations by partner associations and Municipalities, will elaborate an Environmental Social Energy Plan (ESEP) that will prefer installations in:
  • Public buildings and meeting areas;
  • street lighting;
  • hospital facilities;
  • school facilities;
  • systems of extraction and purification of water;
  • preparation of a laboratory for the maintenance and repair of the components of the plants.
NGO – non-profit organizations – humanitarian organizations (SOLEDO BANK offices)
The offices of SOLEDO BANK will operate locally and shall have their operative headquarters in the same district of the Municipalities that joined the project. The work of SOLEDO BANK’s offices is the following:
  • gather preliminary data for an optimized application of the Photovoltaic technology;
  • evaluate human and natural resources of the recipient Municipalities;
  • create a bundle of goods (hospitality, local food, handcrafted products, etc.) basing on the specific situation of the recipient Municipality to be given in exchange for the PV technology to be installed;
  • create systems of turistic hospitality involving local population;
  • stimulate local handcrafting;
  • promote biologic agriculture and transformation processes;
  • evaluate the local goods to be bartered and convert it in hours of work necessary for their production (ex. to produce 10 kg of bread 2 hours of work are needed; to sew a jute bag 1 hour of work is needed, etc.). These data will be used by CETRI-TIRES to calculate the value of the goods to be given in exchange for the PV technologies.
In order to understand the potentialities of the application of SOLEDO – the Empathic Currency, we propose a confrontation table that demonstrate its effectiveness and the mutual convenience in comparison to traditional currencies:
Table 5:
As above explained, the economic-technologic gap that presented a 10/1 ratio is reduced to a 1/1 ratio, which is definitely more fair and sustainable for both parties.
for drinking, for eating, for studying, for healing, for agricultre is now granted by the Sun and by SOLEDO, in harmony with the biosphere and with deep respect for Mother Earth’s ecosystem.
CETRI-TIRES’s Scientific Committee and its President Angelo Consoli want to dedicate SOLEDO – the Empathic Currency to the distinguished economist Jeremy Rifkin, whose ideas inspired the way in which we see the world; Rifkin himself indicates the attention and the respect towards every human being’s DIGNITY as the sole distinctive element among the peoples of the world.
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need,
but not enough to satisfy one man’s greed”
Mahatma Gandhi