More of the world developing and transcending poverty has simultaneously led to more of the world being dependent on fuel. From energy for hospitals to keep the lights on for surgery from pumping potable water from deeper and cleaner wells and just cooking food, global populations have shifted to using fuel. They are also living in more and more remote areas and depending on access by vehicles, powered by fuel.
The reality is that infrastructure for fuel access is complicated, and it is fragile in developing countries or even remote US states that are often using imports from other regional access points and vendors. So when a disaster hits, anywhere in the world, fragile systems shut down and people don’t have fuel, nor do they have their traditional fuel sources for heat and cooking or their past means of accessing water.
And the reality is that the agencies that come to help need fuel and can’t access it because of this shut down in systems. NPR’s All Things Considered exposed “A Chronic Problem in Disaster Zones: No Fuel” after Typhoon Haiyan devastated the Philippines in 2013 . When the Typhoon hit, all the gas stations were shut down, and fuel was not even available on the black market. Aid agencies could not access fuel to help with immediate efforts, and stations were rationing their small supplies to only half a gallon per person at six times the normal rate, waiting in line for hours.
The US-based National Public Radio exposed that FRF was the only organization on the ground in the Philippines getting fuel to those who needed it – locals and aid agencies alike – for free. Ted and his team found the way to get the fuel and get it to the people that need it most, when nobody else could. NPR also exposed that this is a recurring problem, in all disaster situations, even in the US where gas stations have to shut down when power isn’t available. FRF is the only organization focusing on sourcing fuel with particular know how and capacity from years in the field with oil and gasoline vendors and understanding the infrastructure and systems to navigate that system map and its gaps in disaster situations and make access happen quickly.
 Beaubien, Jason. 20 Nov. 2013. A Chronic Problem in Disaster Zones: No Fuel. NPR. http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2013/11/20/246325792/a-chronic-problem-in-disaster-zones-no-fuel.