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Louis Palmer is an environmental adventurer and he was the first person to circumnavigate the planet in a solar powered vehicle, known as the Solartaxi, reaching the attention of an estimated 770 million people worldwide. It took him 534 days to complete his circumnavigation and spread his powerful message that renewable energies are reliable, affordable and ecologically responsible! Following the tire tracks of the Solartaxi, Palmer initiated the ZERO Race this year, which launched four teams in vehicles powered by renewable energy on 16 August 2010. The teams are from Australia, Germany, South Korea and Switzerland, racing around the world in 80 days, staring in Geneva, Switzerland, without producing any carbon emissions. Each competitor's lean, mean, green machine is designed to run strictly on renewable energy, such as solar, wind, wave or geothermal. The teams should finish Geneva again after 18,642 miles (30,000 kilometers) on the road in Jan. 2011. On the way they will stop in 150 cities including Berlin, Moscow, Shanghai, Los Angeles and Cancun for the U.N. climate change meeting at the end of November 2010. Palmer wants to show the world that electric vehicles are practical for daily use, and that the real winner of the race will be Planet Earth. He hopes to repeat the race every two years.
The ZERO Race is planned and managed according to sustainable development principles. The ZERO Race’s sustainable policies are wide-ranging and include: - Only 100% electric vehicles are permitted to participate in the event - All vehicles must be powered 100% by renewable energy produced and fed into the grid during the Race. - The ZERO Race is a 100% carbon neutral event. All unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions generated in its planning and implementation will be compensated by purchasing offsets from a credible organization. - All participants are required to adhere to a responsible code of conduct to ensure a socially and environmentally responsible event.
From CNET News
17 August 2010
by Martin LaMonica
Zero Race sends solar-powered EVs around the world
Drivers in Geneva on 17 August, 2010 set off for a round-the-world rally in solar-powered vehicles to showcase the potential of electric vehicles. The challenge is see whether the four teams can complete the 80-day trip emissions-free, according to Zero Race organizer Louis Palmer, who drove his own "solar taxi" through 38 countries over 18 months. The typical look of a solar car is more like that of a spaceship than of a sedan, being only a few feet off the ground, oval-shaped, and covered with solar cells. The two-passenger vehicles in the Zero Race are more familiar, because they are electric vehicles powered by solar and wind power, according to the race organizers.
Two of the vehicles are battery-powered scooters and the other two are custom sedans designed for efficiency. "With this race we want to show that seven billion people on this planet need renewable energy and clean mobility," Palmer said in a statement. The four teams on Monday departed Geneva, heading across Switzerland with planned stops in Brussels, Berlin, Vienna, Moscow, and Shanghai. From there, the cars will be shipped by boat to Vancouver, and from there they'll cross North America to eventually end up in Cancun, Mexico, in time for the United Nations Climate Conference. The cars will then be shipped to Portugal, where they will complete the final leg and end up in Geneva next January, having covered 18,000 miles. Race organizers will invest in renewable energy projects to offset the emissions associated with the shipping.