ABOUT TEN YEARS AGO, few people believed that a new ferry between Vaasa in Finland and Umeåin Sweden was anything but an unrealistic dream. However, a couple of years later, the construction of the innovative and sustainable new ferry started. One of the initiators of this successful project was Kvarken Council, a cross-border cooperation association. Now the Council has taken on a new exiting project, which, once again, is considered unrealistic by some.
“We want to investigate the possibility of electric aircrafts in our region”, explains Director Mathias Lindström. “Ten years ago, nobody believed in electric cars. Technology shifts often happen faster than we perhaps might think. In myview, it would be unstrategic not to explore this opportunity.”
CURRENTLY, there are over 300 ongoing programs for electric aircrafts in Europe, and Kvarken Council has joined forces with a couple of these projects in Sweden and Norway.
“Electric aircrafts fit our region very well, as we already have deep expertise in energy technology. There are also strong indications that we will have a flourishing battery cluster in a couple of years.”
A feasibility study on electric aircrafts has been initiated, which will be concluded in 2020. Kvarken Council has the role of a coordinator, as well as a platform for project funding, mainly from the EU.
IF – OR PERHAPS WHEN – electric aircrafts become reality, they will profoundly change the concept of flying. Electric aircrafts will have lower emissions as well as lower fuel and maintenance costs. The cost per passenger will be the samefor a 20-seat electric plane, as for a 150-seated conventional plane
“This opens up new opportunities for routes that today have challenges with profitability. This is naturally a good thing for a region such as ours, which is sparsely populated.”
- Cross-border cooperation association for a number of cities, municipalities and Regional Councils in Finland and Sweden
- In the process of becoming an EGTC (European Grouping for Territorial Cooperation)
- Working areas: Business, education, tourism, R&D, healthcare, culture, environmental issues, sports, children and young people, communications, infrastructure