As COP22 moves into its second week and the negotiations are moving to the next level, Vattenfall’s Head of PRA and Media Relations Sabine Froning is taking over the reporting from the climate negotiations in Marrakech.
E-mobility is definitely on top of the agenda when it comes to climate protection. And it’s apparent everywhere here at the climate conference. The COP22 got an EV fleet from Renault and Nissan, with 50 fully electric vehicles to shuttle around the delegates. In addition, participants to the climate conference benefit from a special service: via Uber they can request free electric car transport at any time.
Formula E championships in town
An even more special experience was offered on Saturday (12 November). As part of a passionate crowd of 7000, we had the opportunity to observe the Marrakech ePrix race. The world’s fully electric race has everything of a Formula 1 race – the circuit, the drivers’ parade, the excitement – with the exception of the noise level. It’s more of a nice sizzling, just strong enough to make the spectator realise that these are not at all toy cars. Right from the start we keep our breath for Swedish Felix Rosenqvist, driver of the Mahindra Racing team. He nailed the start and sprinted off to the pole position for as many as 27 of the 30 laps. Having to save energy in the closing stages, he was overtaken by FIA Formula E champion Sebastien Buemi defending his title for Renault and the Brit Sam Bird. Still our Swedish favourite managed to finish third and hence hold a place on the podium.
Next generation calls for action
Meanwhile at COP22, youth from all over the world has gathered in Marrakech for the Young and Future Generations Day. While US President-elect Donald Trump according to news reports is seeking ways to cancel the US commitment to the Paris climate agreement, the message of the next generation is very clear.
Those who will be most affected by the decisions taken by today’s politicians and leaders vocally demand a greater role in climate action. Given that their future is threatened by the impact of climate change, such as greater incidents of drought and flooding, the next generation does not want to sit and wait. And the track records of innovative, ambitious and creative climate action taken by young people is impressive. Just take a look at the winning projects of the Global Youth Video Competition 2016 and Film4Climate:
Nuclear engineers curious about Vattenfall
At the Nordic Pavilion in the Green Zone, I meet two representatives of the Young Nuclear Engineers Society. Their ambition is to promote new nuclear reactors and technology as a solution to climate change. But they are also interested in learning more about Vattenfall’s 100% renewable energy project. And we conclude that the low-carbon future requires especially one thing: the curiosity, competence and commitment of young engineers.