Can Super Yacht Save the Climate?

July 6, 2022

Hate myself for stooping to tech-porn, but made you look.
Sure got my attention. Maybe we can use that.

Interesting Engineering:

The Earth 300 is an ambitious scientific project aimed at raising awareness about climate change all while doubling up as a luxury research vessel funded in part by billionaire guests, according to a report by the BBC’s Science Focus.

Slated to launch in 2025, the Earth 300 megayacht will contain 22 laboratories and will carry 450 passengers, including scientists, environmentalists, and a few billionaires for good measure.

The 300m long vessel will include a 13-story ‘science sphere,’ in which the entrepreneur behind the project, Aaron Olivera, aims to get some of the world’s best scientists to collaborate on climate change solutions, using high-end technology aboard the ship.

The idea is to sell space aboard the vessel to the rich and put 80 percent of the profits back into the science being conducted aboard the ship. Luxury apartments will be available, meaning the wealthy can contribute to science in more ways than one.

“It is really an opportunity for the wealthy to contribute to science and participate in science. This is not having a billionaire in a bathtub, sipping a glass of champagne,” Aaron Olivera the entrepreneur behind the project explained in an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald.

Among the technology available to the scientists aboard the ship will be robotics, artificial intelligence software, built-in sensors, and the world’s first commercial, seafaring quantum computer to process the huge amounts of data collected aboard the ship.

The Earth 300 vessel is planned to be zero-emission, running on nuclear energy from an onboard molten salt reactor based on technology similar to that being built by the Bill Gates-backed TerraPower

BBC Science Focus:

What you’re looking at is a nuclear-powered research vessel that’s the size of a cruise ship and packed with 22 laboratories. It’s being built by a crazy entrepreneur with a shade of Tony Stark about him and when it launches in 2025, the ship will carry 450 people, including scientists, environmentalists and the odd billionaire on voyages to study the climate.

The Earth 300 is hugely ambitious but that’s exactly the point, according to the man behind it. Aaron Olivera wants to build an awe-inspiring object that will galvanise public interest in climate change. He describes it as this generation’s Eiffel Tower or the Olympic Torch of global science.

“It has been designed to capture peoples attention but also their hearts and imaginations,” Olivera told Science Focus. “If we want to make big, bold changes we need everybody’s help, and we mean everybody, all ages, backgrounds and even all types of intelligences.”

To get everyone’s help, generate some interest, and make big bold changes, I have a modest, but maybe more effective, suggestion..


Hydrogen powered superyachts and donations from billionaires often grab headlines in the fight against climate change, whilst more simple and potentially more effective ways to tackle the climate emergency get less attention. One powerful catalyst for rapid change is the education of girls. Access to education is a basic human right, yet across the world, girls continue to face multiple barriers based on their gender and its intersections with other factors such as age, ethnicity, poverty and disability. However research shows that for each intake of students, educating girls has multiple benefits that go far beyond the individual and any particular society. It can also result in rapid and transformative change that affects the planet itself, and do so better than, for example, any electric car.

A recent project brought together a broad coalition of researchers, scientists, business leaders and policymakers to look for ways to not just halt rising emissions and the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, but to cause an annual decline or “drawdown”. Project Drawdown came up with the top 100 activities that would contribute most to this goal – and at number six sat an initiative that is rarely talked about in environmental circles – educating girls. Just beneath it sat the interlinked issue of family planning at number seven.

Putting that in perspective, instantly recognisable, known, effective and highly promoted mechanisms for reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and fighting climate change, rooftop solar panels and electric vehicles, come in at numbers 10 and 26 respectively. The team looked at dozens of methods before drawing up a list of 80 immediate and practical measures — along with 20 near-future concepts — to rank the 100 most powerful solutions to reversing global warming. According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) data used, educating girls could result in a massive reduction in emissions of 51.48 gigatons by 2050.

This is because educating girls has an impact beyond the individual, cascading into her family and her community. Almost universally, research since the 1980s shows that women with higher levels of good quality education marry later and have fewer and healthier children, live longer and enjoy greater economic prosperity. For example, in Mali, women with secondary education or higher have an average of three children, while those with no education have an average of seven children. An increase to a woman’s income of $10 has the same beneficial impact on her children’s nutrition and health as an income increase to a man of $110. Hence, the global population outlook depends greatly on further progress in education, particularly of young women. The United Nations currently projects that the world’s population will grow from 7.3 billion today to 9.7 billion by 2050, with most of that growth being in developing countries, including regions such as sub-Saharan Africa. But recent research shows that if girls’ education continues to expand, that number would total 2 billion fewer people by 2045. Longer, better quality education for girls also matters for the human progress of communities, including health, economic development, and democracy.

I get it that billionaires are going to be more attracted to a super yacht they can ride on than to building schools in the developing world, but maybe once we get them on the yacht, we can educate them? Spitballing here.


4 Responses to “Can Super Yacht Save the Climate?”

  1. rhymeswithgoalie Says:

    I’m all for building schools to educate girls, but I think we need to deal with the patriarchal-religious fanatics who keep shooting at them, blowing them up, or burning them down.

    Girls are kept from education for a number of reasons, so we need to address all of them.

  2. Anthony O'Brien Says:

    That yacht will never be greener than my push bike. The car in my driveway is not green, even though unused. Unused, it is greener than a Tesla. Yes it broke down, but I could afford to repair or replace it.

    Without running the car the weekly budget is so very much easier to manage. $20 a month gets me all the grocery deliveries I need and about once a fortnight I use an Uber.

    And no, I am not in the US

  3. redskylite Says:

    Looks great for the wealthy – but there is still the bread and butter work to think about….

    The days of roaring engines echoing around Queenstown’s canyons could be numbered as a new fleet of electric jet boats is developed.

  4. This thing looks terrible. I would never want to be seen in this thing.

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