Innovation and sustainability are the fundamental pillars of the new generations

wouterWouter Draijer
Considers himself a person who is 110% passionate about innovation in the reusable energy’s sector. Currently he is pursuing this dream through a solar energy company that he has founded, after graduating from the Master of Science in Management and Entrepreneurship in UPF Barcelona School of Management.

 

1.    Why have you chosen to dedicate your life to innovation in sustainability and renewable energy?

Innovation and sustainability have been two key factors in my past, as well as they will be my drivers in the future. I’ve always been interested in technology, energy and innovation. After I finished my Bachelor in Sustainable Energies, I had dozens of ideas of how I could contribute to the world. I was lacking the knowledge of how to grow businesses more efficiently, so I decided to do a double-master degree, focused at Management & Entrepreneurship, which I finished with success at the UPF Barcelona School of Management.

When I arrived here in Barcelona, I saw a big opportunity in the renewable energy sector. I knew my passion and my history, as well as my desire to contribute to society and climate, would be the perfect match to set up a company in Barcelona. There is no doubt that climate change is happening. As an engineer, I learned to evaluate the technical aspects of my creative thoughts. With my knowledge in Entrepreneurship and Management, I’m able to evaluate the success factor of a project. Solar energy in Spain is for sure the biggest opportunity at the moment.

At the moment, we have a talented team working on building something big. We want to install 10.000 subscription-based solar energy systems to privately owned households in Spain by 2022.

2.    What social impact do you think your project has Business?

It’s been trending for millennials to have the desire “to have an impact”. Myself, as an mellenias, share this desire. My future dreams come from moments or thoughts I had when I was younger. One of the first goals I had was “to make the life of people easier”, I was 9 when I wrote this for school.

There are several methods to create an impact. Besides my goals to realize a strong positive impact on climate, I think the social aspect is needed to achieve this. What we do is create awareness, a movement and insights.
How:

  • We educate people on how their behavior results in bad, or good climate impact.
  • We educate people about new opportunities regarding solar energy

I’m of the opinion that we can have a strong positive impact on climate, as much as we can change the mentality of the people in a positive way. Living sustainable and being aware of your personal contribution is almost a trend, at least, in the country where I’m from. From the knowledge I obtained in my previous Start-up and culture in Holland, I know that a change in mind is needed to reach the goals of Solarmente, but also from the Government. The government wants to be 100% sustainable by 2050, it’s us that can directly contribute to reach this goal!

3.    What are the main challenges of the energy sector renewable before the serious threat of climate change?

The biggest challenge will be the change of the mindset. We are selling something people 100%, but are not aware of, yet. For years, Spain hasn't improved its sustainable solutions not as much as Europe’s fastest innovative countries, although the need was of similar strength.

As mentioned before, to realize an impact, you have to change the mindset of the people. In this case: a sustainable mindset and living. When people will see the the benefit of solar energy for their own house, people will realize that it is something that does significantly reduce their electricity bill. Not even the electricity bill will be reduced, their direct CO2 footprint will be reduced as well.

But it is not only the human mindset that needs to change, it is also the boards and institutions that allow these innovations to happen and will promote them. There are 47 million people that need to work in the same direction.

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