If you only have a minute, watch this video before reading the blog post: https://vimeo.com/447680785
And then please read our Press Release (click to download 7.7MB PDF)
With the bizarre times the world is going through, you may have missed something- the worst locust plague in history. It’s getting worse month by month, on many continents. Millions of people may starve or lose their livelihoods. It’s hard to fathom, however in East Africa, the locusts are eating more food every day than what the population of Germany would consume in a year. It’s diabolical in East Africa, India, other parts of the Middle East, South America and now the USA too.
We only learned of this a couple of months ago and realised that we needed to accelerate the rollout of our technology into this sector, much sooner than planned. We’ve made fantastic progress over the last three years with our retrofit for aircraft in aerial mapping and aerial firefighting, and now is the time to make a huge difference to millions of people’s lives with aerial spraying. We can get our aircraft spraying locusts within weeks and then increase the precision and effectiveness by using a seemingly obvious (but technically challenging) solution- flying at night at low level.
Traditionally, aerial spraying has only been conducted during the day because it’s too dangerous for a pilot to fly at low level at night time. However, locusts are on the ground at night time (and also in low-cloud), and so spraying during these times would mean less over-spray, no impact to birds or bees and higher elimination of the locusts. During the day, the locusts are flying around and swarming, and this moving target makes it very difficult to spray them successfully.
By enabling 24/7 operations, we can stop the locust plague from becoming a total global disaster. But we can’t do it alone. We need your help. We need more people with expertise in locust spraying (we are aviation/technology experts), we need expertise in working with NGOs, we need local agents to help spot locusts, we would also like to find some food-safe spray, so that we can pre-season our locust protein (that’s partly humorous, but also a genuine consideration). Please reach out to us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you can do something to help.
From a governmental perspective, when food supply becomes scarce or even if it is threatened, this can be very destabilising. Locusts are therefore not just a problem for farmers, but they are problem for everybody who eats food. Locusts are fairly indiscriminate with what they eat and so they decimate many different types of crops.
So, without labouring the point too much, I’m sure you can see that somebody has to do something. We’ve decided to be that somebody and we want you to join us on this vital project.