UK|05 Jun, 2016

Insight: World Environment Day

World Environment Day (WED) is a global movement and one of the UN’s principal days for positive environmental action, encouraging worldwide awareness and action for protection of the planet. WED is a day for the people to take part in something to become an agent of change for protecting our environment and is celebrated for coining the famous slogan, ‘Only One Earth’ back in the 1970s.  In the present day WED seeks to help smaller and less developed nations while tackling some major environmental topics such as sustainable consumption to the illegal wildlife trade.

In order to celebrate this day for the environment, the FIA Formula E Championship has brought together some of the most impressive, coolest and most genius innovations that have sustainability at their core. The categories of transportation, clean energy, air quality and solutions for a better planet all seek to show how people are pioneering in producing products which have the environment at the forefront of their corporate responsibility, and show that a change in the way we utilise our surroundings can be, and has been set into motion.

The transportation sector accounts for around a quarter of all global emissions, which is why the push into the electric vehicle era has become more prominent and exciting than ever before! As the world’s first fully electric motor racing championship in the world, Formula E fuses environmentally conscious motor racing with unprecedented and thrilling urban entertainment! Our cars are powered by clean, renewable energy and it is our mission to transform every day transportation and offer solutions to air pollution issues through the research, development and promotion of electric vehicles and their infrastructure in the city centres which we race in, and beyond!

The innovations in transportation include Wheely’s Café, an organic portable café who is redefining the rules of what a café can be. The café is pimped out with an electric bike, using the human body as the main source of electricity, a solar panel, a wind turbine, an air purifier, a greenhouse for growing coffee beans and they even recycle their coffee grounds into flowers! Local Motors are showcasing the mindblowing developments of 3D printing, bringing to life the first ever 3D printed electric vehicle! Morgan Motors have converted their vintage petrol three wheelers into the future of electric, creating a sustainable car whilst remaining true to their excellent display of bespoke British craftsmanship. Faraday Future have contradicted Right Said Fred in his song, ‘I’m too sexy for my car’ offering not just a concept car, but a car of concepts that is intuitive towards its drivers individual driving style. The car is adaptive, seamless, kitted out with ultra high-tech gadgets, has a motor in each wheel and is seriously smooth in all senses of the word.

The clean energy category opens your mind to the incredible ways in which we can harness the world around us in order to create energy. The sun, wind, our bodies! These projects offer solutions to mass energy demands, incorporating clean energy into the urban landscape and bringing power to the powerless. But not only that, these projects have made us rethink our perceptions on waste, reimagining waste as a product to be transformed into energy! All of that energy from those great shapes you were pulling out on the D floor, and even your pee can be made into a vital source of energy, and no, we are not taking the piss! Take a look at the video to see for yourself!

It is becoming more of a rarity to breathe in some good old fashioned fresh air into our lungs. Air pollution is one of the biggest threats towards climate change but is also an extremely hazardous worldwide health concern. Cleanspace allows us to gain a deeper understanding of the air that we breathe around us in the form of the first personal pollution monitor, whilst the Pidgeon Air Patrol sends our feathery friends on a recce to literally ‘tweet’ real-time air pollution information. The Studio Roosegarde has created a vacuum which sucks the air to create spaces of clean air where people can breathe and drive their creativity. In order to challenge our pre conceived notions of waste, Studio Roosegaarde have utilised the particulates collected in the vacuum to create some pretty trendy Smog Jewellery! All these projects make the largest invisible treat to humankind visible. The Cloud Collective are a group of architects who are re-visualising the co-habitation of nature within the urban landscape. Their highway algae farm extracts the CO2 from passing cars and can be turned into renewable energy, like the fuel that charges the Formula E cars! But also, nutrients, medicines and cosmetics! Elegant embellishments offers an elegant and highly efficient solution to city air pollution by decorating the facades of buildings with a smog eating surface. Not only does it significantly reduce city pollution, as in its creation more CO2 is absorbed than being emitted, so the more elegant embellishments, the better for the climate!

The inspiring solutions for a better planet category brings together some of the most incredible life-changing projects which make our jaws drop. Imagine a future where we can all make a difference to our environment by cleaning the oceans one stroke after the other with our swimwear, where every person in the world has knowledge and access to clean water, where we grow our own sustainable furniture, where waste can be reimagined into a fashion accessory, cemeteries turn into beautiful forests and a paralysed patient’s dream of standing can become a reality through sub conscious thought! These projects will restore your faith in humanity, WOW people are amazing.

More people should know about all of these great innovations we hear you cry! Yes, we totally agree! Please help us spread the great news of what these incredible projects are striving to achieve for the good of us all. On this World Environment Day let’s feel inspired by how creativity can be used to transform the environment and society in which we live. What makes us different from our furry friends is our knowledge and creativity – so let’s start using it more wisely like these amazing projects to start saving our planet, and together we can call for change.