From the 11th to the 13th of April the EVER Conference 2017 took place in Monaco at the Grimaldi Forum. It is a forum dedicated to ecology and renewable energy that showcases the best of latest sustainable transport and environmentally friendly projects. This is the 12th edition of the international conference that welcomes individuals and groups reunited under the common goal of creating a more sustainable environment – this year about 40 different stands from companies such as Honda, Renault, Kia Motors and Toyota were open to the public, including an array of outdoor activities on the theme.
The event offered a veritable insight into the renewable technologies that already exist in the area and others that have just been developed, ones that you never knew existed that give you hope for a more sustainable future. The conference was of the upmost pertinence due to the ever-pressing environmental issues that the whole world is facing, raising awareness of the need to develop more durable resources and reduce one’s ecological footprint. It also serves to promote the Principality as an environmentally friendly community that has put in place many projects to minimise urban pollution. In fact, La Poste, the Monaco postal service that was present at the conference, has now introduced electric cars starting from this week!
Futuristic cars from a collection of the greatest car manufacturers were on show at EVER, including the Microfret refrigerated van that works autonomously and has a powerful battery life, ideal for transporting fresh produce in the area. The Venturi Formula-e racing car was also on display, and will be back in Monaco to race in a month’s time. This is not the only e-racing event that exists; EV Trophy is a rally organised by CEO Ukrainian Andrei Bily Y, with the cooperation of HSH Prince Albert II, that “unites like-minded enthusiasts to raise awareness about electric mobility”, explained the CEO. Participants from various countries race against each other in their personal electric car, starting in Copenhagen and running through the green cities of Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Italy and France before ending in Monaco where the winner will be awarded by Prince Albert himself. Check out the last leg of the race in Monaco on the 1st of June!
Representatives from the renowned port-side restaurant Stars’N’Bars were present to demonstrate the various ecologically minded projects that they’ve integrated into their service, adapting to the changing times and making a positive contribution to society. Primarily, they serve natural and locally sourced products; they’ve grown their own on-site vegetable garden and recently signed an agreement with Mr Good Fish to ensure that they respect the natural reproduction cycle of the farmed fish. Stars’N’Bars also organizes Eco-Hub Sunday’s, promoting activities to boost well-being and to learn about our planet, that include monthly workshops on nutrition and adopting an environmentally conscious vegan diet, carried out by The Clever Kitchen.
Electrically powered forms of transportation were not limited to cars and bikes, but also boats! NOFUEL is a start-up that has designed and developed a luxury boat model based on 100% electric, premium, and autonomous solutions. The charging stations are powered by solar panels that assure 5-6 hours of autonomy. The design is elegant, using only renewable resources such as mahogany and cork and no form of plastic whatsoever; it would fit in harmoniously with the environment.
Similarly, the students of the Lycée Technique de Monaco built a boat solely powered by solar panels integrated in the boats design! This impressive project was sponsored by the Monaco Yacht Club and only took a few days to be completed by a team of 5 students specialising in Electrotechnic.
The outdoor activities included Ride & Drive; over 10 electric cars provided by the various exhibitors available to any member of the public that wanted to test-drive them for free!
Visitors could test drive the Volkswagen E-up; the car has a smooth steering system and can reach speeds of 160km/h, the engine is perfectly silent and charges itself as you drive. Car enthusiasts would have been delighted to try out the Honda NSX, the luxury hybrid supercar that revolutionises the definition of electric cars, reaching speeds of 308km/h and boasting a sleek design. Pilots were on hand to talk drivers through the cars commands and the best ways to handle the controls to drive harmoniously with the road ahead.
Visitors could also ride around on electric scooters and bikes, such as the ecological E-Tricks bikes that began in 2009 and produces affordable 2-wheel transport that perfectly merges into city life, like the Vespa-inspired Mosquito scooter, as well as more extreme conditions such as snow or sand.
You could also experience one of the first ever independently driven shuttle buses belonging to the company CarPostal that integrates itself in city traffic using sensors – there is no need for a driver! Technology such as this is gaining more trust amongst the public that might’ve initially been alarmed at the concept of machine reliance. This time, a technician was on hand to control the bus with an Xbox controller in case of unexpected blocks on the road, previously unmapped on the inbuilt itinerary. They are also working on predicting the movements of nearby motorcycles that tend to weave in and out of the traffic erratically, but the technology will be perfected over the next few years.
Make sure to check out the EVER event next year to learn about all the sustainable solutions out there! After all, the future belongs to electric transport that doesn’t depend on the finite and polluting resource of petroleum.