Eco IQ 2

Turkey impresses me each time I visit with its dedication to creating a

healthy progressive environment; I was delighted to see a growing

number of solar electric panels, solar hot water systems and wind farms

as we travelled through the country. I loved seeing the commitment

Turks make to planting and nurturing trees and in Cappadocia I was

impressed by the celebration of creating beautiful architecture out of

materials and shapes unique to the local landscape. Turkey is blessed

with a large coastline, great sunshine and wind, many mountains, fast

flowing streams and rivers and the land and both landscape diversity and

cultural diversity to experiment with the many solutions that will get us

through the 21st century safely. The new paradigm of decentralized,

distributed energy and resources and waste treatment is well suited for

a country like Turkey with such a rich and diverse heritage, and with easy

access to the markets and ideas of both East and West. In a world that

desperately needs decentralized solutions, Turkey's central geographic

position gives it a unique opportunity to connect all the dots and offer

the world a new model of systems integration. Most impressive for me

was the amout of activity going on around various scales of biogas

systems. In Ankara at the University we were given a great tour of the

laboratory of Kursad Fendoglu who is doing experiments in small scale

anaerobic digestion from food waste, combined with an innovative algae

reactor creating a closed loop industrial ecology system where the

output of one process fed the input of another. We also learned that

their team was building large scale commercial systems. We've stayed in

touch via our facebook group “Solar CITIES Biogas Innoventors and

Practitioners” and are linked up with many of the students and faculty

we met on the last tour so we are excited to see how Turkey is

progressing in this field.

As a Google Science Fair judge for the past 4 years I've also had the

pleasure of working with Turkish high school student Elif Bilgin from

Istanbul who, at 16, invented a way to turn banana peels into a durable

bio-plastic. This kind of innovation is in the cultural DNA of this ancient

yet post-modern land. It is clear that Turkey could emerge as a leader

in these fields and be the bridge that demonstrates to both Europe and

Asia how effective environmental sustainability can be once all organic

wastes are transformed into fuel and fertilizer and even plastics.


You’ve been to Turkey before. From your point of your, what are the main differences in

Turkey? Thus, on which topics should we focus more about energy saving and actions to

reduce environmental pollution?