According to a recent study by the University of Cambridge solar storms pose a serious threat to the American economy, our way of life, and life itself for many. The study suggests that depending on the severity of the incident 2/3 of the country could be without power for extended periods and the economic impact could cost anywhere from $6 billion to $40 billion a day.
But commerce and industry won’t be all that is affected by massive prolonged power loss. For most this will mean that their water supply will vanish, their heating or air-conditioning could be out, food will spoil, communications will be down, purchasing supplies will be with cash only if at all, and emergency services will be both overwhelmed and uninformed. These issues could result in mass unrest, riots and looting, and a general rise in lawlessness. Here are some of the preparations we can be making now to protect ourselves.
- Store as much water as possible along with chemicals that can be used to treat water such as Iodine, Hydrogen peroxide, and bleach, and water filters capable of removing harmful bacteria.
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- Store non-perishable food that does not require heating or water to eat.
- Store other necessities such as first aid supplies, soap, candles, and basic camping gear.
- All those living in a cold area should have an alternative heating source such as a kerosene heater or wood stove and plenty of fuel kept on hand.
- Your family or group should have a plan of action that does not require electronic communications, including a location to meet at in case of an emergency and what to do if no one arrives.
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- Keep cash at home, with electronic transactions impossible, the only means of purchasing items will be barter or cash.
- Take personal security seriously. Develop a plan to fortify your home and keep a firearm and plenty of ammunition on hand.
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Those in urban areas will be hardest hit and should, therefore, take the most precautions, but the nature of the threat is such that the area affected could be massive and the duration could be much longer than other natural disasters.