The underlying quantitative goals of the 17 Global Goals must be achieved as early as 2030. Time is running out, especially since by t time more than half of the world's population lives in tens of megacities with millions of inhabitants. This urban world already uses no less than two-thirds of the total energy demand on earth. A major energy consumer is transport. That’s why the World Solar Challenge contributes to an even more sustainable future bi-annually by organising a solar car race. Solar Team Twente structurally joins, only using renewable energy.
The UN goals motivate the Solar Team Twente to take up the challenge of significantly and fundamentally contributing to the development of sustainable mobility in the urban environment. The Dutch student team from Twente focusses on three of the 17 Global Goals: 7: Renewable energy; 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure and 11: Sustainable cities and communities. Bi-annually, with the next edition being organised in October, the team from Twente will take up the World Solar Challenge in Australia with their high-tech solar car. The ultimate goal: challenging the future of urban mobility.
Our world will soon look very different. The world population will have grown to over 8 billion people in 2030 and nearly 10 billion in 2050. Most people already live in megacities with millions of inhabitants, but in 2030 that would be no fewer than 40 cities with more than ten million inhabitants each. By 2050, 7 out of 10 megacities may have grown into real city-states. Currently, the 300 largest world cities host no less than 19 per cent of the world's population and contribute 48 per cent to the global gross national product. This requires a lot of energy.
The Urban World of 2030 asks for zero-emission mobility. Transport, logistics and mobility are essential in the infrastructural and digital networks that emerge in world cities with millions of inhabitants. Quality of life will be defined mainly by the quality of traffic and transport, making sound and emission reduction essential and central themes. At the same time, mobility is the basis for a growing amount of tourist transport, accommodation and entertainment. It is expected that from 2025 all new cars will be electric. The 21st-century revolution will be the autonomous self-driving passenger car and lorry. Let them be solar powered.
The World Solar Challenge has been organised bi-annually since 1987. Teams from universities, knowledge institutes and companies from all over the world join with their self-designed, -built and -tested solar cars. The teams race 3,022-kilometer Highway One between Darwin and Adelaide, right through Australia, at high speed with their cars. Solar Team Twente battles for the winning position every two years. In October the latest solar car from Twente, packed with innovative technological highlights, will compete again. With their automotive technologies, they want to contribute to sustainable mobility for a sustainable future.