Mar 15th 2016 at 2:59PM by Chris Bruce
The Australian fuel supply company Caltex is sees an advantage of going green because the business now operates the world’s first solar-powered gas stations. As the photo above shows, the sites are little more than the pumps and solar cells, so don’t expect to pick up a cold drink and some beef jerky. However, they should keep rural drivers on the road to their destination.
The locations in Tom Price and Onslow, Western Australia, are so remote that they don’t have power lines running to them, and they’re hours from the nearest major towns. By taking advantage of the region’s abundant sunlight, the solar cells can store energy in batteries, and this electricity ensures a 24-hour supply of diesel.
“The biggest challenge of supplying fuel in remote parts of Australia isn’t getting fuel there,” Leon Calvetti, Caltex Network Development Manager for Western Australia, said in the announcement. “The obstacle is powering the pumps so the fuel can get into the customer’s tank – it’s very expensive and inefficient to run a generator when there are only a handful of customers every day.” By accepting a card to pay for the diesel, the sites don’t even need regular employees.
In a nice step for the environment, the solar refueling sites are also mobile. If at some point in the future, there’s no longer demand for diesel in these locations, Caltrex can load all the equipment on a truck and take it somewhere else. This type of equipment would have made the lives for the characters in The Road Warrior a lot easier.