Categorized | Environment, Sci-Tech

‘The Blue Economy’ launches 100 innovations project


The World Congress on Zero Emissions Initiatives – Launching “The Blue Economy” is slated Sept. 13-17, 2010 at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu. The Congress will focus on design of an economic system driven by innovations, generating jobs and building social capital.

The Blue Economy is based upon one hundred plus breakthroughs in businesses that have proven their competitiveness. The innovations being addressed at the World Congress are related to Energy, Food, Health, Housing, Transportation, Waste and Water, and how these innovations integrate and provide new job opportunities in today’s changing world. Concrete case studies from around the world will inspire entrepreneurs to follow suit.

In attendance will be world renowned leaders and entrepreneurs including Professor Gunter Pauli, founder of Zero Emissions Research Initiatives (ZERI) and author of “The Blue Economy.”

Beginning this week and for the next 100 weeks, Pauli, together with Enterprise Honolulu, will publish one innovation per week to stimulate entrepreneurship, competitiveness and employment. Pauli forecasts the 100 innovations could generate 100 million jobs during the next decade.

“Our challenge today is to respond to the basic needs of all with what we have, to build upon indigenous cultures as in Hawaii, learning from the ancient systems of the past, while drawing upon concrete innovations and examples from around the world,” he said.

Here is a snap shot of the first of 100 innovations featured by Pauli:

“The Vortex” projects to save energy, eliminate chemicals, and generate 250,000 jobs within a decade in the water treatment and water production industries using the process of reverse osmosis. Internationally, countries such as Spain and France are investing heavily in reverse osmosis plants to stem a water shortage.

It is within the context of the world market for water that we have to assess the arrival of an extraordinary simple innovation: the vortex. The vortex has the capacity to dramatically increase efficiency in water treatment, cutting costs while generating local jobs. This natural phenomenon could one day replace chemicals and membranes, and upset the existing cash flows of traditional suppliers that have looked safe.

The technology platform of the vortex is inspired by the observation that dirty water cleanses itself as a river moves downstream. The continuous swirling movement forces air in and out of the water, discouraging and stimulating beneficial micro-organisms.

Two Swedish inventors, the development engineer Curt Hallberg and his colleague Morten Oveson, translated their observations into a mathematical model and then created a simple device that emulates the movement of water in a vortex with predictable results. They continued their venture to create Watreco AB based in Malmo.

Watreco AB was elected the Swedish GreenTech company of the year in 2009. This company is more than green – it changes the business model of water. The power of the vortex rests in the predictability of the laws of physics, where air particles are dragged to the center, from where air is sucked out.

The energy source for this process may be simply gravity, which is guaranteed to power the device 24 hours per day! Gone are chemicals, gone are membranes, and energy consumption is minute.

RO Plants in Hawaii such as the five operating at the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority (NELHA) on the Big Island have been bottling desalinated deep seawater for years, there are new lessons to be learned by water purification and desalination operators from the system design described by Pauli. The full case study, The Vortex, can be viewed online at

Hawaii is one of the most isolated archipelagoes and among the most diverse places in the world with respect to the number of life zones in a geographically unique area. The location provides an excellent venue for modeling applications. Hawaii is also one of the most vulnerable places on the planet, heavily dependent on importation of most commodities, especially foreign oil and food.

However, given these challenges, Hawaii has already become a viable location for global companies to validate pilot projects to market and export intellectual property and expertise worldwide.

In addition to Pauli, keynote speakers also include businesswoman Tomoyo Nonaka, Chairwoman GAIA Initiative, Japan. She was the former CEO of Sanyo Electric from 2005 to 2007. Upon taking the position, she created a new corporate vision, ‘Think Gaia.’ Nonaka started to restructure many business divisions under the new vision for Sanyo to become a leading company to solve environmental problems with its technology through a three-year Evolution Plan.

An added aspect of this particular World Congress and its location in Hawaii is the opportunity to integrate protocols of the host Hawaiian culture and the opportunity for delegates to learn from a prosperity model of ancient Hawaii known as the ahupua’a system.

Furthermore, this Congress will set new levels of close to zero waste at the Hawaii Convention Center while establishing best practices and standards for future conferences, conventions and meetings including locally-sourced food offerings during the Congress dates. Pre and post World Congress opportunities on all Hawaiian Islands will allow delegates to experience actual innovations while also enjoying much of what Hawaii has to offer.

Sponsors of The World Congress on Zero Emissions Initiatives – Launching “The Blue Economy” include CT & T America, the world’s largest producer of electrical vehicles; First Wind, focused exclusively on the development, ownership and operation of wind energy projects; Blue Planet Foundation, seeking to foster systemic change in how Hawaii generates and uses energy; and Hawaiian Electric Company, committed to meeting the long-term energy needs of Hawaii.

Early Bird Registration is now open until April 15, 2010
Register online at:

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