From Paris to Tokyo, the world has a seemingly endless array of impressive sights to see. Unfortunately, in visiting many of these places, a hefty environmental footprint is inevitable. Though it can be mitigated to an extent by mode of transportation and shopping locally, there is only so much that can be done. Or is there?
What if I told you that you could travel the world on an ultra-modern, luxurious, and eco-friendly yacht, all while advancing environmental research?
Entrepreneur Aaron Olivera is looking to make that vision a reality with his goal of creating an atomic yacht aimed toward both scientists and tourists.
The Future of Eco-Tourism
Olivera has spent the past 6 years and roughly $5 million executing his plans to incorporate eco-tourism and researchers on a futuristic ship dubbed Earth 300.
Earth 300 was designed by the famed superyacht specialist Ivan Salas Jefferson. The ship clocks in at roughly 1,000 ft long and 200 ft tall, and will be home to some 425 passengers. The passengers will be comprised predominately of scientists, staff, and some students who will utilize the trip to gather pertinent research about the environment. These travelers will pay little to nothing for the journey.
That said, a few of the 425 people will be a group of tourists housed in the ship's luxury rooms for a 10-day voyage. The vessel will also accommodate a small team of helpers to assist the elite group of travelers, each of whom will pay the hefty price of $3 million.
Though such a pricey trip isn't for everyone, the money will be put to good use by funding the trip and the research conducted by the scientists, all while allowing tourists to enjoy a unique experience.
Olivera expects the ship will run 300 days per year, equating to a gross revenue of nearly $100 million annually. Olivera has also stated that the yacht will pull in additional revenue from hosting events.
Of the profits made by Earth 300, 80% will be funneled back into environmental research.
Luxury on Water
The ship's design is truly breathtaking, with Olivera explaining that he wanted it to encourage onlookers to think about climate and the environment. Earth 300 will be home to elegant rooms, an observation deck, and a 13-story-tall glass “science sphere” located at the ship's rear.
"We wanted the sphere to inspire whoever looks at it to save the planet. Imagine if we could build an object that would galvanize people around the planet." Olivera calls the vessel "The Eiffel Tower of our generation."
The ship will be home to 22 research labs where the scientists will conduct their studies and it will also house one of the first commercial quantum computers onboard a vessel. Olivera has further stated that research conducted on the yacht will be shared globally and considered open-source, meaning there is an even greater chance for an environmental breakthrough.
In addition to a commercial quantum computer, after completion of its development stage, Earth 300 will eventually boast nuclear power by U.K.-based Core Power. When finished, the nuclear-powered ship is expected to run with minimal emissions.
Until the reactor is completed, Earth 300 is likely to utilize synthetic green fuels.
Interested tourists still have a few years left to save for this trip of a lifetime, as the expected launch date is sometime in 2025. Olivera wants the first trip to be a circumnavigation of Antarctica with a tour of the Arctic circle to follow.
This concept will undoubtedly be popular with those looking for a unique experience who have some extra cash to spend. Further, this idea could create a ripple effect with other similar concepts popping up in the tourism industry, ultimately providing a way for people to see the world without leaving a significant environmental footprint. Until then, Olivera is optimistic about the future and the growth of his atomic yacht, acknowledging that "The future of humanity lies in ambitious projects like this one."