Sadhana Forest India is not connected to the electrical grid. As a part of our sustainable living, we chose to only use solar and human powered energy. Tamil Nadu, the state where Sadhana Forest India is located, currently has a load balance deficit of 34.1%  where people sometimes go up to 9 hours without power each day . This deficit continues to rise every year throughout India. Through mindful energy conservation practices, Sadhana Forest India is able to supply 100% renewable electricity for the needs of our community.
Our Solar System
We currently have an 11 kilowatt-hour (kWh) solar (photovoltaic) power system, connected to 10 batteries. This system was recently updated in November 2013.
To minimize our environmental footprint, we mainly use power during the day; this means energy is coming directly from the solar panels and not from our batteries which are environmentally unfriendly. On sunny days (which is the majority of the year) participants have an average of 4 hours of charge time per day and more on the weekends.
We also use a submersible solar pump to fill our water tower. The water is then gravity fed throughout the community.
Human Powered System
On cloudy days we supplement our energy needs with a set of four “exercise” bicycles, which charge the batteries. This is a human powered generator capable of producing a maximum of 480 watt-hour (Wh). Our participants are always very eager to do this when it is needed. This is an excellent tool to educate that energy is a valuable resource that requires serious effort to obtain.
As a further attempt to utilize human power and to use less current, we have built a bicycle mixie (blender) and plan to build a bicycle powered laundry machine in the future.