Inventor of the first solar-powered aircraft, Bertrand Piccard visited Astana
Inventor of the first solar-powered aircraft, Bertrand Piccard visited Astana. Last year, he achieved the impossible: together with his associates he made a round-the-world trip on an aircraft which is powered by solar energy and doesn’t emit harmful substances into the atmosphere. The Swiss inventor wanted to prove the boundless possibilities of clean technologies in front of the whole world. Bertrand Piccard took part in the 10th conference of Energy Solutions for Climate Change, which took place as part of the EXPO 2017. He shared his vision about the future development.
BERTRAND PICCARD, INVENTOR, SWISS PILOT:
- Started when I made the first flight around the world nonstop in the balloon in 1999. When I landed there was almost no fuel, almost all the gas was consumed and I thought the limit for duration is the fuel. Let’s try to make a plane with no fuel at all. The only way that we can do a plane with no fuel today is the sun, the solar power. So, that is how the idea was born.
Famous experts flew to the conference from all over the world. Participants discussed advanced start-ups in renewable energy, which aims to fight the processes of global climate change. According to the scientist from Stanford University Jeffrey Ball, new sources of energy will radically change the global economic system. He says that China and the United States can act as the leading "players". China accounts for approximately 60 % of the world’s production of renewable energy.
JEFFREY BALL, SCIENTIST:
- So there are lots of countries that have decided that they have to play in this transformation and those countries are making very different kinds of decisions about what they have to do. They are adopting very different kinds of policies from one country to another. I think it is fair to say that almost every country in the world is doing something. The extent of what countries doing differs from one to another. But China is really important one to keep in mind. largely because China is, on the one hand, the world’s largest carbon emitter; it is the world’s largest consumer of coal. On the other hand, China is the largest producer of renewable energy such as solar and wind. So, however you asses energy, China is the biggest and China is quite involved with Kazakhstan in investing in various aspects of the economy here. First of all, China is an important potential partner for Kazakhstan. But more broadly China is really setting the international agenda of wither the world on clean energy.
According to forum participants, by 2040 global energy consumption will increase by 30 %. The demand for energy resources will increase to a greater extent in the countries where industrialization is actively developed. Even the most minimal desire to fulfill the Paris agreement on climate will require the cumulative increase in investments in the world’s energy sector up to US$44 trillion by 2040, of which renewables will make up 20%.