Wow, what a week. I just spent the last week in Switzerland for the International Symposium for Sustainability in Alpine Resorts and it left me so inspired and certainly opened my mind up to some new things. I was invited to come and speak at the conference for the work that I’ve been doing with Laax, Switzerland. The conference was mainly about measuring and certifiying sustainability, but they asked me to speak about the commercially viable opportunities out there.
Laax, is a pretty bad ass project, let me quickly summarise. It is the 5th largest ski resort in Switzerland, with 235km of piste and one company has a 99 year lease on the whole mountain, owns 5 hotels (one of them being a Design Hotel, rocksresort), 25 restaurants, 29 ski lifts, the ski rental company, they do the marketing for the summer and winter destination, the freestyle academy and build the freestyle snow park (with the largest half pipe in the world), that company is called Weisse Arena Gruppe, and that’s my client/friends. The place is pushing the limits with all kinds of cool stuff, hydroelectricity, hydro powered snow making with a special man made lake dedicated to this, biomass heating for numerous buildings, they introduced a new recycling policy for the mountain, solar power on some chairlifts which heat the seats of some pimping porche design chair lifts, hybrid groomers, electric car parking stations, electric bikes, waste heat recovery from the lifts, low impact staff clothing, energy efficiency and more. In the future we are planning out a wind farm, waste to energy, more biomass with a focus on waste wood gasification, trying to introduce biofuel and hybrid grooming, a lot of solar power projects, solar hot water, and much more energy efficiency. All round it is a pretty exciting project.
1 MW Biomass wood-pellet boiler using only Swiss wood
3 Electric Car parks with free charging for guests, soon to be a full electric car park
Waste heat recovery from the main gondola used for heating the hotel
Reto Fry Head of Sustainability / Green Style at Weisse Arena Gruppe.
In the snowboarding world, there’s no bigger honour than getting recognised as the Transworld rider of the year. We are currently in the process of making an animation for the project with the legendary Transworld, Rider of the year 2014, Nicolas Mueller as the voice over. This bad ass free style snow boarder is walking the talk as a international representative of POW (Protect Our Winters) and has been a vegetarian for the last 20 years because of environmental reasons. Here’s a video of him in action:
Nicolas Mueller is Finding it.
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I’ve always been quite lazy updating the finding infinity blog… so in 2015, the finding infinity blog’s weekly update hit number one on my list of 5 new years resolutions. Yep, while most people select one, this year I decided I would take on five of them. I guess that means 2015 is going to be an ambitious year! Aaaaand there is possibly no better way to feel completely obligated to your new years resolutions than announcing them publicly online.Read more
On September 4th, 2014, we threw down a solar powered party in London with Trillion Fund and Dame Vivienne Westwood, here's what happened:
After many years of getting extremely cheap oil and gas from Venezuela, Cuba is now having to consider paying realistic international prices for fuel. As the majority of the country is powered with Diesel generators, renewable energy is becoming more and more interesting and they are getting into this stuff in a big way. They have all kinds of technology spread over the country including hydro, biogas, biomass, wind and solar. As there are often cyclones in Cuba wind can be a complex supply technology for the cigar smoking legends. There are a number of foreign investors starting to invest in renewable energy in Cuba, one of the main players is the British company Havana Energy (www.havana-energy.com). The most interesting renewable resource that they have going on is an African thorny bush called Marabu, it is growing at a crazy rate, they have so much of the stuff they might even need to export it as biomass pellets. Here is more info on the thorny bush called Marabu: http://tinyurl.com/lowh9khAnd here is more info on generally what is going down in Cuba and renewable energy: http://tinyurl.com/lsvclrx
Startup FlyKly just raised cash for a new product that converts any old bike into an electric one. Genius.
CHECK THE VID:
Germany is investing big cash in battery storage to help push the limits on renewables on the grid. More info here: http://reneweconomy.com.au/2013/germany-finances-major-push-into-home-battery-storage-for-solar-58041
The neighborhood of Malmö in Sweden is probably the most advanced neighborhood in the world in terms of transitioning to self-sufficiency, especially the way they deal with waste.
Check out the vid here:
Algeria is working in their adventure towards infinity.
More information here: http://www.irena.org/REmaps/countryprofiles/africa/Algeria.pdf