Emergency Preparedness Information

Fuel Consumption and Burning Notes

The following information was originally posted on the UseNet, and is now here.

Lighting Equipment

GAS LANTERN (Coleman, two mantle)

Burning at the rate of 5 hours per day, the following amounts of white gas would be used: Per day – 5/12 quarts; per week – 2 12 quart per month – 3 1/8 gallons; per year – 38 gallons.

KEROSENE LANTERN – (with a 1″ wick)

This device will burn 45 hours on 1 quart. (Dietz Lantern Information) burning at the rate of 5 hours per day, the following amount of kerosene would be used: Per day – 1/9 quarts; per week 7/9 quarts; per month 3 1/13 quarts; per year – 10 gallons.

FLASHLIGHT (Two battery)

Batteries used were well-known brands in testing). Continuous running on new batteries – 7 hours. 7 month old batteries, continuous running – 5 hours.

CANDLES (Burning time)

3/4 diameter x 4″ tall – 2 hours and 20 minutes

7/8 diameter x 4″ tall – 5 hours

2″ square x 9″ tall – 7 hours per inch or : 4 inches – 28 hours

9 inches – 63 hours

Heating or Cooking Equipment


With both burners burning for 4 hours per day, the following amount of white gas would be used: per day – 1 quart; per week – 7 quarts; per month – 7 1/2 gallons; per year – 91 gallons.

CAUTION: DO NOT STORE WHITE GAS, KEROSENE, & SIMILAR FUELS IN THE HOUSE OR WITHIN THE REACH OF CHILDREN. Consult distributors of fuel, or government agencies that would have information on the proper storage of fuels

Freeze Dried Foods

Freeze dried foods come in different varieties, like individual meats or prepackaged meals. They must be reconstituted with water. Freeze dried foods are often very expensive. You’ll be able to tell if you’re getting dehydrated foods or freeze dried foods by the price. Freeze dried foods are about $25-$35 USD per #10 can.

Freeze dried meals (they come in pouches or bags) will store well about 3 years. Recipes with shrimp, tuna, brown rice, nuts, sour cream, and dairy products will keep a maxiumum of 2 years. (Source: AlpineAire)

Freeze dried foods (stored in vacuum sealed cans) will store 10+ years. The US military suggests that freeze dried meats will store for 30 years, and Mountain Home, a manufacturer of these products, guarantees their Freeze Dried products for 30 years.

Note: I have bought some of these freeze dried pouch meals for my 72-hour kit before. They are lightweight, but you may have to store or carry extra water and a fuel source for heating the water in your kit to reconstitute them. I didn’t like the taste or texture of the meals I bought. The flavors seemed to mix together, and after a while, the reconstituted meat pieces fell apart. (Now I store MRE’s because there’s no extra water, they can be eaten cold, and caloric needs for extreme circumstances are already met. MRE’s are heavy, though.)

About TVP

TVP (textured vegetable protein) is a meat subsitute that can be used in everyday cooking or food storage. It is mostly used in recipes that call for ground bits of meat, like soups, chili, or spaghetti. It must be reconstituted with water. TVP is an inexpensive alternative to freeze dried meat, some #10 sized cans of TVP cost less than $10.

TVP will store well for 8-10 years. Possibly longer under ideal conditions: cool (69 degrees or less), well-ventilated, dry environments. (Source: USA Emergency Supply)

Reconstituted TVP can be frozen well.

Emergency Refrigeration

Countries in Africa have been using a clever form of refrigeration for preserving foods called a Zeer Pot. They place a small clay pot inside a larger clay pot (unglazed and with a lid) and fill the space between the pots with sand. By keeping the soil damp, fruits and vegetables can be stored for a longer period of time. This form of refrigeration may not work well in extremly humid areas where the evaporation time of the soil is diminished.

Following are some links relating to Zeer pots:

  • Lehmans
  • SciDev.net – Refrigeration the African way


When the budget or space is tight, you could buy several of those Reynolds HotBags (aluminum foil bags). They are made to sit right on the grill or campfire embers to cook food. You can even double or triple wrap your food in alumnium foil for the same effect.

Emergency Cooking Fuel sources

CANNED HEAT (STERNO) – This can be purchased at most sporting goods stores as well as most grocery stores. You will need to store 1 large can per person per day.

BUDDY BURNER – Select a shallow can (tuna, cat food, etc.) and insert coil of corrugated cardboard the height of the can.

Pour melted paraffin to partially fill can. Allow to harden. Birthday candle in center will help light. A lid on the can with a wire handle will help control the heat. Instructions from teh South Jordan City, Utah website.

Emergency Stoves

VAGABOND STOVE – Use a number 10 can. Cut opening around the top of the can with a can opener punch. This is to provide a draft for your fire. Then cut an opening at the bottom of the can large enough to fit the Buddy Burner, sterno, or a small fire. Cook on top. Here are some >instructions

PEPSI-CAN STOVE – Read instructions for the stove by Scott Henderson. This awesome, superlight stove uses denatured alcohol as fuel. Scott has an updated G-Stove, but problem is, you need a beer can to make it!

  • About the SunStove
  • How to build a solar stove – detailed plans
  • Sufer Chef – sells premade solar stoves for $20-$30 dollars. Also has other emergency cookers and plans to build a smokeless solar oven.
  • Emergency Essentials – be sure to scroll down to the end for the folding pocket sized 3-wing cooking stove that’s only $2.50.

Food Storage and Preparedness stores online

Books on Emergency Preparedness

  • LDSGrand’s Emergency Preparedness Book Section – a large selection of books including cook books and Native American survival techniques

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