Thursday, 22 July 2010

“Solar Solutions for the Future”: The first leaflet

Here is the leaflet for the initiative “Solar Solutions for the Future”. It is one of the most interesting initiatives I have worked with and think it will contribute some significant changes in the near future.

The initiative “Solar Solutions for the Future” will support all solutions that move society toward a sustainable solar-based energy system. It will highlight efforts in all major sectors and will not be limited to the industries typically included in the solar sector.

These policy and business efforts include:

  • Constructing buildings powered by solar
  • Manufacturing solar-powered vehicles
  • Designing IT control systems for solar solutions
  • Providing logistics for goods and services based on availability of solar energy
  • Developing software applications that help customers understand the benefits of solar solutions
  • Communicating key solar messages in marketing

Solar Solutions is not about a specific company, sector, or technology; it’s a paradigm shift. Everyone can win by supporting Solar Solutions for the Future.

Creating a platform for Cities and Companies

Many stakeholders have expressed the need for a platform where information and best practices can be shared. Solar Solutions for the Future will use innovative digital tools to meet this need, in collaboration with stakeholders.

A 21st Century Solar Map

The 21st Century Solar Map is a Web 2.0 platform to support the accelerated uptake of solar solutions by cities and companies.

This platform will:

  • Identify strategic solar solutions for the future
  • Provide best practices
  • Facilitate interaction among change agents
  • Support innovation
  • Encourage job creation
  • Identify thresholds

The platform will be open to all stakeholders supporting an accelerated uptake of solar solutions.

Why now?

Climate Change and energy security are two of the greatest challenges of the 21st century. Reducing CO2 emissions and dependence on fossil fuels is a challenge but also an opportunity for those who can provide solutions. The cities and companies that are successful in implementing solar solutions will be winners in the 21st century.

Solar solutions present a historic opportunity to support job creation and innovation, as well as CO2 reductions and a sustainable economy. This opportunity could be leveraged by the implementation of a 21st Century Solar Map using cutting-edge web solutions.

Here is a draft summary of the event during the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit 2010 in NY, a final meeting report will be issued, but I think this captures many of the interesting points at the event. The solution agenda is growing stronger. Read the summary here

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Meals to Come: A History of the Future of Food, by

“Meals to Come: A History of the Future of Food”, by Warren Belasco is one of the best books I’ve read about food and the possibilities, as well reasons, to try to predict the future.

In the book there are so many layers that it is hard to not to think about our limited discussion regarding the future of food today.

Food is such a fascinating subject and still it is rare to read something really interesting. Belasco manages to look at the future of food from many different angles and thereby the future of food becomes a reflection of major ethical challenges, such as equity, poverty, animal rights, the role of technology, the role of companies in society, but also the role (and limits) of traditional science.

There are so many fascinating and provoking arguments in the book that I recommend people to read this instead of next sensationalist book made for airports.

As all authors Belasco is sometime sharpening the differences and sound bites very hard to make a point, but as long as you read this as a book about ideas and not a book where one side shall be proven wrong/right this helps rather than undermines the value of the book

The fact that Belasco spend so much time discussing if speculative (science) fiction as a better predictor than methodical and “serious” research is very interesting. As he correctly reminds us the most important changes are not linear they are due to: “wild cards, unexpected twists and turns, surprise decisions.”

I like to echo Belasco’s last sentence: “Realism favors small steps, while the challenges we face may require quantum leaps. For these we may need much more romance than our ironic postmillennial era as been able to muster so far – more utopians proposing “dreams to live by,” more public intellectuals issuing impassioned wake-up calls, and more public citizens hungry to foresee and act.”

As an ebook you can read this book without having to cut down forests and ship the book in planes and lorries about the planet