Brussels, Brussels, Belgium

Episode: #22 Brussels & The Solar Impulse Foundation: "What We Have In Common"

Guests: Bernard Clerfayt, the Minister of the Capital Region of Brussels, Belgium, and Bertrand Piccard, twice-around-the-world man and Chairman of the Solar Impulse Foundation


Find transcript here

Summaries of Key Takeaways:

  • Innovative Solutions for Sustainability: Focus on practical and economically viable solutions for environmental sustainability.
  • Energy Efficiency and Renewable Resources: Emphasizes the importance of shifting towards energy efficiency and the utilization of renewable energy sources.
  • Economic Viability: Highlights the economic benefits of adopting sustainable technologies and practices.
  • Digital Transformation Challenges: Discusses the challenges associated with digital transformation in the context of transitioning to cleaner energy.
  • Collective Action and Informed Decision-Making: Stresses the need for collective efforts and informed decision-making in tackling climate change.
  • Technological Advancements: Advocates for embracing technological innovations to achieve sustainability goals.


“To you, what is a Smart City?”:

Bertrand Piccard: “A smart city is a city that is not stupid like it is today. Speaker 4 00:38:57 <laugh>, Speaker 3 00:38:57 The smart city is a city where you need much less energy, much less resources, much less water, much less waste. And this is good for the environment, but it's good for the people who have a much lower bill at the end of the month. So it is a city that makes people richer, much less poor, living much better, and the environment would be protected also. So it's a win-win win on every side. And what is really important is to say that it is already possible. It is not something that will come only in the future. It is something we can do already today.” 

Bernard Clerfayt: “It's a very large definition and I share it completely. So there's nothing I can add to that. In a much narrower sense, a smart city is a city with collecting much more information, uh, about how we live, how we produce, how we pollute, how we waste, and by collecting all this information to be able to improve the way we live, uh, to produce better, to waste less, uh, and and all that. So it's a city that use the capacity we have now to collect a lot of information, like do a lot of social media. We know collecting a lot of information to improve the service they offer us, but we can use it at the city level, collecting a lot of information and use it to make the world a better, this city, a better place to live by reducing, uh, waste, reducing consumption of consumption of resources, improving a circular economy and all that.”