Continuing with the theme of my last piece, another ideal potential equipment platform is the agricultural spec’d Unimog, manufactured by Mercedes-Benz. These are highly versatile and very reliable vehicles equipped with capabilities typically associated with tractors — namely 3-point linkages, PTOs (Power Take Offs), and hydraulics. Just as with the tractor, a broad array of implements may be used for the purpose of repairing degraded landscapes.
The added benefit afforded by using the Unimog platform is the transport capability– whether it’s for equipment, bulk material, or people. This is especially important in places that present special transportation challenges due to the lack of good roads and general infrastructural development. In my own experience, this type of vehicle would be particularly useful in a place like Somaliland for instance (as shown in the following photos).
The distances separating towns and villages are quite far with paved roads found connecting only some of the more populated areas — which are relatively few. Aside from the need for tough and reliable 4×4 vehicles to provide basic travel capabilities, any intended work in such a setting — or similar environments — has to be coupled with this platform.
Even jobs such as drilling and digging wells/bore holes for water which often require the use of mobile drilling rigs can be more than adequately covered in addition to the aforementioned functionality.
There are also examples of Unimogs using rubber track replacements for tires to reduce ground pressure and the damage (compaction) associated with tires and heavy vehicle use (similar to tractors). This is found to be the case particularly with older model vehicles.
It’s good to be aware of the many options that exist in helping to facilitate the work we’re engaged in. If the resources are made available and the possibility of putting such tools to use is presented to us, then we have a great opportunity to make our good intentions very real, and very fast.
- TERA (Tracked Earth Repair Apparatus) For Large Scale Earth Repair
- Imprinting Soils – Creating Instant Edge for Large Scale Revegetation of Barren Lands
- A Call to Large Scale Earth Healing and Lessons from the Loess Plateau (Video)