Bertrand Piccard: New mission for low-carbon innovations

Bertrand Piccard: New mission for low-carbon innovations

Jul 4, 2018
Image credit: Solar Impulse Foundation
Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Switzerland – Swiss aviator and adventurer Bertrand Piccard, son of the famed Jacques Piccard, who explored the deepest parts of the ocean, has launched an “Efficient Solution” label to promote a healthier and cleaner existence on Earth. The label evaluates products and technologies focused on improving efficiency and assesses their economic viability.

Piccard gained worldwide recognition in 2015 when he circled the globe together with André Borschberg in an aircraft powered entirely by the sun. With the accomplishment compared by some to the landing on the moon, he has followed in his family’s tradition of expedition and exploration: His grandfather explored the stratosphere in a helium balloon and his father went down to the deepest parts of the ocean. Bertrand Piccard did not want to let his own fame go to waste and uses his prominence to campaign for change and a cleaner and more sustainable life.

He launched an alliance and together with that group initiated an “Efficient Solution” label. The initiative is also meant as a global partnership and wants to support innovative solutions, often championed by startups that lack visibility. Ultimate goal is to connect these innovators with investors and solution seekers according to an article in GreenBiz.

The Efficient Solution Label certifies the technological feasibility, environmental and socio-economic benefit, and cost-effectiveness of these environmental solutions. The experts that evaluate each solution also give an estimate of the payback period for investors.

Technologies suggested for recognition must be market-ready or already sold commercially according to GreenBiz. The solutions must address one of five sustainable development goals (SDGs): water, clean energy, industry, cities, and responsible consumption and production.

The first 1,000 “solutions” that are awarded the label will become part of a portfolio that Piccard will personally present to a network of heads of state and companies. Interest has so far been strong, particularly from startups. At the time of the publication of the GreenBiz article, 28 technologies and products had received the label. Amongst the successful technologies are a system that captures heat from the shower drain and recycles it back to reheat the water, a solar desalination process that operates without batteries, a retrofittable anti-smog device that injects hydrogen into a combustion engine and reduces particulate pollution by 80 percent and fuel consumption by 20 percent and a process that converts organic factory waste into low-cost gas or power at very low cost.

Image credit: Solar Impulse Foundation