Docked in Venice, the MS Tûranor PlanetSolar is preparing to return to sea for a new mission. Announced in September 2014, the search for a new owner who would be able to continue operating the ship began in September 2014 and has been successful. After only a few weeks of discussion and one meeting in New York at a United Nations conference, the Ströher family decided to offer the solar catamaran to the Race for Water Foundation, which is committed to pursuing the ship’s operation in service of the environment.
The Race for Water Odyssey is a scientific sailing expedition that aims to draw up a comprehensive assessment of plastic ocean pollution. Marco Simeoni, the Race for Water Foundation’s President, is currently in New York, where the expedition has made a stopover. Delighted by this donation, he is very touched by the confidence the Ströher family has shown. Grateful, he reveals his vision of the solar ship’s future:
“I aspire to equip the MS Tûranor PlanetSolar with a mobile laboratory for collecting and analyzing plastic litter in order to fight against ocean pollution. The history of this unique boat and the enthusiasm she generates at each stopover are powerful communication tools that I would like to put to good use to further the cause for water preservation. Moreover, this ship represents a wonderful pedagogical platform.”
The Ströher family is happy to have found the Race for Water Foundation, a successor with similar values that is capable of sustainably pursuing the ship’s operation in service of environmental preservation.
“PlanetSolar’s objective, on one hand, was to conceptualize an idea that would prove the efficiency of solar technologies, and help in their growth and promotion. And on the other hand, it aimed to demonstrate that above and beyond a technological feat, the ship could be used for practical purposes in connection with sustainable development,” stated Immo Ströher, patriarch of the family.
Thanks to the businessman’s financial commitment and significant personal investment since 2007, PlanetSolar was able to go well beyond its initial accomplishment—completing the first exclusively solar-powered trip around the world—to create a sustainable company with a strong brand and international notoriety.
This donation arrived at just the right moment. In fact, the “Race for Water Odyssey”, initiated by the foundation, is in full swing and extensive new scientific data has already been collected. Thanks to this donation, the foundation will be able to start making preparations for the MS Tûranor PlanetSolar’s future campaigns. The ship’s operation has been entrusted to PlanetSolar SA’s experienced teams, that are working in parallel for the promotion and deployment of renewable energies.
About the Race for Water Foundation
Founded in Lausanne in 2010, the “Race for Water” Foundation’s mission is to preserve our planet’s most valuable resource: water. The foundation is an officially recognized non-profit organization seeking to implement concrete and sustainable actions, focusing on two main themes: protecting oceans and freshwater. “Race for Water” initiates projects aimed at raising awareness and taking concrete action on the ground. These actions are directed at four target audiences: economic players, political bodies, the scientific community, and the general public—with particular emphasis on future generations. “Race for Water” collaborates with organizations such as UNESCO, UNEP, IUCN, WWF, and WBCSD.
Marco Simeoni, President of the Race for Water Foundation, is delighted and touched by this donation and is looking forward to the future missions of the fondation aboard the largest solar powered boat in the world.