Tuesday, January 3, 2017


As part of the CO2 Green Drive adventures in St Petersburg, the second part was the participation in The Strategic Planning XV Jubilee Forum for the Regions and Cities of Russia on October 24th 2016. According to their website: "The Forum is held annually since 2002 and has already firmly and justifiably gained the right to be regarded as the main platform for discussion of methods and tools of strategic planning, as well as constructive analysis on the most important and sensitive problems of strategic plans and complex projects implementation in urban development of Russian Federation." 2017 is The Year of Ecology in Russia, so some focus was given to the potential of a new Green direction. 

The name of "Green Day" was continued from the festival a couple of weeks earlier, but it is also the name of a 5 year old concept as part of the Strategic Forum. Partneres such as The Nordic Ministry of Culture, The Danish Cultural Institute and The St Petersburg Polytechnic University can be seen in above logo collage, for the photo backdrop. 

See above video, in Russian, about the The Strategic Planning XV Jubilee Forum for the Regions and Cities of Russia 2016.

The main hall of the Park Inn Hotel, where the larger meetings, discussion and presentations were held.

Above the participants in the "Ecomobility Strategies and Sustainable Transport Systems of Cities and Regions of Russia". The concept of the round table discussion formatted presentation was the following: "This year Jubilee Strategic Planning Leaders Forum 2016 celebrates the fifth anniversary of the Forum Green Day that will be held in the context of preparation to Russian Federation Year of Ecology 2017 (according to Presidential Decree of January 5, 2016). Forum Green Day forms the fifth theme cluster dialogue line under Forum 2016 and focuses on presentation and discussion of the best international and Russian practices of implementation, alignment and management of strategic plans taking into account modern trends of globalization and greening the economy."

The concept continues: "Challenges of organisation of sustainable transport systems and mobility management have moved to a new level and now should be solved in close coordination with the plans of the territorial and socioeconomic development of regions taking into account the Transport Strategy of the Russian Federation. Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation has developed a national concept of sustainable urban transport systems, aimed at the formation of a federal basis to improve the quality and sustainability of urban transport as well as the road safety in Russian cities. Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation takes an active part in Transport, Health and Environment Pan-European Programme (THE PEP) under United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE)". There were many great presentations, and it was wonderful to be able to tell fun stories about The CO2 Green Drive Project, its adventures around the world, and its Protector Finn Andersen, as can be seen above! 

On the 26th of October, another Green Day with focus on the Youth was held at The St Petersburg Polytechnic University.

In above image, some of the speakers from various Nordic contries along with the organisers and partners.

In above image is Simon Sølvason, who is a Transport Engineer at Copenhagen Municipality. He spoke perfect Russian, as he was born in Russia. It is always lovely to hear stories about how Copenhagen is breaking new grounds for greater liveability. The innovation that has been used to reach this point, can now be used to help other cities around the world to re-think their cities.

CO2 Green Drive - Art and Culture for a Sustainable Future.

On the very same evening, I went to see the location called Manege, housed in a former historical riding hall - or the manege - of the Horse Guards regiment (architect – Giacomo Quarenghi, 1807). Over the course of the 19th-20th centuries, in parallel to the dramatic changes in Russia’s history, the building of the manege had undergone a series of major changes. 

It has recently been transformed into the biggest exhibition space in central St Petersburg, and it is rather amazing! It turned out that, that very evening, a special event for the Douglas Coupland (Generation X) exhibition that was currently on display, was being held. Good to see he is art and truly inspiring to see the space of Manege.

It was good to walk in the streets of St Petersburg again, saying hello to some of my favourite buildings and restaurants.

When on one of these walks, I passed by this curious car. And no, it was not Electric.

The Part 2 of my St Petersburg adventure in 2016 was good experience, and the above image taken in the design gallery Bulthaup represents it well!

Read more about Part 1 of the St Petersburg 2016 adventure HERE!

Read more about the experience, written by Astrid Rifbjerg from the Danish Cultural Institute in St Petersburg on their site HERE


The CO2 Green Drive Project has had a great 2016, with productions in both New York and St Petersburg. The two Cultural Capitols of the East and West. The St Petersburg production was done in collaboration with The Danish Cultural Institute, The St Petersburg Polytechnic University, The Leontief Centre and Nordic Days. It was called GREEN DAY, as can be seen in the above banner.

The above video gives a good description of what happened during the GREEN DAY festival. 

The above collage of images are from the various events that took place during the day, described in more detail below.

It was hard to not think of the band Green Day. The song "When I Come Around" goes well with the story of The CO2 Green Drive Project taking its time to finally be produced in St Petersburg, with many years underway. And now that it finally happened, it could not have been a better time for it to do so. 

If on Times Square in New York, there is no way around the Hermitage Square in St Petersburg

The Bike Parade Performance started on Hermitage Square, with a CO2 Bike Installation Sculpture. 

All the participants in the parade, laid out their bikes on the square in the shape of CO2.

The CO2 Installations Sculpture was then filmed from a Drone, as seen in above video still.

It was a pleasure to see all the ways the GREEN DRIVE design was used, including on all the staff as can be seen in above photo of some of the lovely volunteers. 

See the above video from Russian TV about the Bike Parade through the streets of St Petersburg.

The Bike Parade went from the centre city of St Petersburg, out to the location of Peter The Great St Petersburg Polytechnic University. The location of the start for the CO2 Green Drive GPS Tagging Performance with Electric and Hybrid Cars.

More about Peter The Great St Petersburg Polytechnic University in above video.

It was good to see that Nissan was involved again, as they also were in both New York and Hong Kong. The Silver Nissan Leaf, was a nice cosmic tip of the hat to Billy Name. Kronk!

It was however the first time a Fisker Karma had participated, even if the designer Henrik Fisker is Danish. The design is brilliant and we look forward to see what will be the next move from the Fisker Family.

Nice to also see a electric Mitsubishi, who was one of the first electric car players on the market. There is a story that says that they bought their technology from a Danish inventor named Thure Barsø Carnfeldt, who was the man behind the first Danish electric car "Hope Whisper" in 1982.

The CO2 GPS TAG Route was created by the local producers, and gave the participants a lovely tour around St Petersburg. 

After the CO2 Tagging Performance, the vehicles lined up in the shape of CO2 on the main square of the Polytechnic University.

Once the CO2 formation was in place, the installation was documented by a Drone, as can be seen above.

The man who have been behind and supported The CO2 Green Drive Project, from the first time he heard about the idea in 2008, is then General Secretary of The Danish Cultural Institute, now Director of the St Petersburg office - Finn Andersen. In above image he is on stage giving his message of Climate Awareness and Thanks to St Petersburg and the participating partners, holding a Danish flag.

Lined up behind Mr Andersen on stage, was the different partners - the Nordic ones with their flags in hand. 

The President of Peter the Great St.Petersburg Polytechnic University Mikhail Petrovich Fedorov holding a speech on main stage

The Green Day Flash Mob Dance

Brilliant violin music on stage by local artist!

The Mascots attending the Festival, was some kind of Birds with Academic hats that entertained and did their part to create good and positive energy.

They were of course also perfect to take selfies with!

The Exhibition of Environmentally Friendly Vehicles was held in the park on the University grounds, that was in the middle of surrendering to autumn, green going into orange and red. Having the Fisker Karma in the exhibition, certainly confirmed that these Green Cars can also be a design object and rather hot, if you ask me.

In the exhibition was also the Russian 3 wheeled electric BRAVO - EGO 13

However, the Electric Car that was the greatest pleasure to see, was the EL LADA. And no, it is not a Spanish car, it is the Electric version of the Russian classic car brand LADA. 

It would be wonderful to see the original classic version converted to Electric!

It was good to see that there was some intense interest among the visitors and many students at the University. 

As part of the activities was the Official opening of Russia's first Solar powered Electric Car Charging Station. There are are currently a handful of Electric Charging Stations in St Petersburg, but plans are being made to increase this number in 2017.

Mr. Andersen was part of the opening ceremony, together with the The President of Peter the Great St.Petersburg Polytechnic University Mikhail Petrovich Fedorov, when the Green Ribbon was cut.

The first Electric Car to try out the Power of the Sun into it's battery was of course the Silver Leaf.

The Solar Powered Charging Station was built in collaboration with the University and various local partners and placed close to the Campus.

As part of the festival, there were various local NGO's and organisations that had an opportunity to showcase and talk about their activities. More and more people worldwide have opened up to the fact that eating a non-meat dairy is a brilliant way of taking care of their body and mind. Well, the most important intent in talking about these issues in connection to the climate, is the fact that production of meat has a huge negative impact on the climate. Much bigger than all CO2 emitted by combustion engine cars.

More and more children have become aware of the fact that the meat they eat comes from a dead animal. This is creating a new generation of vegetarian and vegans. Their empathy towards animals will be part of reducing the future generations CO2 emissions.

There was screenings of various short films in the park, where the above scene is from the short film made by Jonathan Kronborg Grevsen in connection to the WAVE project. 

In above still from the short film about the whole Green Day Festival, Yrs Truly is seen holding my hand in the air, right next to an image of Croatian Electric Master Nikola Tesla as part of my presentation. Nikola Tesla has been a huge inspiration to the me, ever since I got the book  "Tesla - Man Out of Time" by Margaret Cheney, by my good Croatian friend and artist Anton Perich in 2005. Tesla has always been of inspiration to him, and his work is Very electric! 

The very fact that Tesla over a hundred years ago, had found the solution to free energy for the population of the world, is mind blowing. Then the big question is, why have this not been implemented? 

In the above photo, taken in Hong Kong during a presentation at the Design Society Denmark booth, there were several sharp observations on why Tesla has been taken out of the history books as a hero and replaced with Henry Ford.

Tesla has always been a national hero in his home region. His face and inventions was on the former Jugoslavia's 5000000 Dinara bill.

And on Serbia's current 100 Dinara bill.

In a New York newspaper on January 7th, 74 years ago.

He was featured in the Time-Line installation as part of the "Autotopia" art exhibition at EXIT ART, along with the Tesla Roadster that came out in 2006 from Tesla Motors, and the Movie Poster for the now classic Documentary "Who Killed the Electric Car" by Chris Paine. 

An Orange Tesla Roadster was also exhibited in the main gallery of EXIT ART, as an art object.

And now that we are going down the Tesla memory lane, the above image is of the first time we exhibited the Tesla Roadster at the Roskilde Festival in 2009. To the right of it, is Jan Magnusson's Bio-ethanol Le Mans car, and to the left Christian Marcus's classic white Danish Electric Ellert.

To go back to Green Day in St Petersburg again, there was a whole tent dedicated to Tesla Inspired experiences. In above a Electro Magnetic Glass Ball, that could be interacted with by the visitors.

Electric Magnetism is a curious concept and the fact that our human energy can interact with visible electric magnetism is rather magic.

The final performance of the Green Day, was by some Tesla Ninja Jedi Warriors. 

It was with great pleasure to see and experience the St Petersburg production of Green Day - CO2 Green Drive, and Thanks to everyone that helped make it happen!

Read about Part 2 of the activities in the fall of 2016 HERE!

Read more about the experience, written by Astrid Rifbjerg from the Danish Cultural Institute in St Petersburg on their site HERE