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COP28

Designers Turn Recyclable Blade Tips Into Works of Art at GE Vernova’s COP28 Exhibit

Mary L. Dudy
December 11, 2023

At the COP28 climate conference, now taking place in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), GE Vernova reached out to eight artists from countries across the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and South America through a collaboration with the creative services organization Neol, asking them to use an unexpected canvas to create a “Wonders of Wind” exhibit as part of the Blue Zone, located in Expo City Dubai. Replicas of the ZEBRA 100% recyclable wind turbine blade tips made by LM Wind Power, part of GE Vernova, were transformed into dynamic murals reflecting core themes at COP28: energy, water, food, health, transport, diversity, nature, and trade. Using a range of vibrant colors, the artists harnessed their diverse backgrounds and experiences to create a unique set of designs that will help propel and bring awareness to the 3XRenewables by 2030 initiative, which GE Vernova joined this year.

3XRenewables by 2030, initiated by the Global Renewables Alliance, calls for a tripling of global renewable power capacity by 2030 while also underscoring the need to double energy efficiency improvements as an immediate measure to combat global warming.

The 62-meter-long recyclable blade was developed by the ZEBRA (Zero wastE Blade ReseArch) consortium, a group of industrial companies and tech centers, of which LM Wind Power is a founding member. The blades are engineered to be 100% recyclable at the end of their life, to reduce the energy consumption and waste involved in building new wind farms.

Her Highness Sheikha Shamma bint Sultan bin Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president and CEO of the UAE Independent Climate Change Accelerators, led the official inauguration of the showcase together with Scott Strazik, CEO of GE Vernova. Founder of the Shamma bint Sultan Sustainability Initiatives social enterprise, co-founder of Aurora50, and founder of Reset MENA, Her Highness is a leading figure in the UAE, widely recognized around the world for her contributions to sustainability and social responsibility.

 

Sheikha Shamma and Scott Strazik
Her Highness Sheikha Shamma bint Sultan bin Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan and GE Vernova CEO Scott Strazik. Top: Sheikha Shamma tours the exhibit, with GE Chief Sustainability Officer Roger Martella and Strazik at left. Credit: GE Vernova. Designs: Courtesy of the artists.

By inviting viewers to take in the joyful, hopeful visions of a world powered by renewable energy, the exhibit is a beautiful reminder of how collaborations between companies, governments, and even artists serve to put an inspiring “spin” on the climate challenge.

 

Diversity

Kimiya Justus COP28

 

“This vibrant artwork celebrates the unity of global youth, symbolizing their collective stewardship of our planet’s future,” says Kimiya Justus, the Berlin-based artist and illustrator (@kimiyajustus on Instagram) who crafted the design for this blade tip. “It’s a mosaic of cooperation, focusing on the themes of nature and peace, underscoring the pivotal role of teamwork across genders in shaping a better world.”

 

Aquatic Harmony

Atıl Aggündüz COP28

 

Istanbul-based artist Atıl Aggündüz (@atilaggunduz) says his design for this blade portrays “the interconnectedness of humanity through the fluidity of water. The illustration captures the essence of unity, showcasing diverse individuals as ripples in a vast ocean. Figures blend seamlessly, symbolizing the shared experiences and common threads that bind us together in the beautiful symphony of life.”

 

Transport

Emma Jane Butler COP28

 

“Transportation weaves a tapestry of contrast, especially between southern Africa’s diesel reliance and Dubai’s modernity,” says Emma Jane Butler (@emma_butlerstudio), a British-Zimbabwean artist who divides her time between the UAE and Harare, Zimbabwe. “Imagining a future where electric and hydrogen vehicles … eclipse traditional fuel, this vision also sparks hope for cycling’s rise in southern Africa, championed by initiatives promoting bike culture and safety.”

 

Nature

Nani Maezono COP28

 

“Air flows endlessly, connecting and energizing our world,” says Lima, Peru, graphic designer Nani Maezono (on LinkedIn). “In the Amazon, the towering lupuna tree stands tall, safeguarding the forest. Home to diverse species and valued for its healing properties and sought-after timber, it symbolizes the urgent battle to preserve our planet’s vital ecosystems against destructive deforestation.”

 

Energy Is Us

Oğul Can Öztunc COP28

Oğul Can Öztunc (@oguloztunc) is an Istanbul-based architectural designer. “Energy transcends scientific boundaries,” he says of this work. “It’s the essence of emotions, the atoms and cells that compose us, our thoughts, and the meditation we practice. It’s the sun’s warmth and the wind’s whisper. This piece seeks to infuse the concept of energy with a humanistic touch, celebrating its universal presence in all aspects of existence.”

 

Vessels

Nora Zeid COP28

 

“Since the beginning of time, trade bridged gaps between cultures,” says Cairo- and Dubai-based illustrator Nora Zeid (@itsnorazeid). “As merchants traveled to sell their material goods, they also exported their language and way of life. For better or worse, this exchange is a cornerstone of how we live our lives today, connecting societies form time immemorial.”

 

Health

Eda Çağıl Çağlarırmak COP28

 

Inspired by the cyclical movement of wind turbines, Eda Çağıl Çağlarırmak’s artwork is “a holistic dance of well-being, blending mind and body care into life’s rhythm. It’s a celebration of health inclusivity, interwoven with nature’s elements, envisioning a future of equal healthcare for all,” says Çağlarırmak (@edacagill), an Istanbul designer and part of the Fam° collective.

 

Food

Bülent Gültek COP28

“This piece portrays agriculture’s harmony with nature, emphasizing bees’ critical role and advocating for sustainable farming energized by wind power,” says Bülent Gültek (on LinkedIn), an Istanbul illustrator and co-founder of the Toyart.ist toy art movement. “It celebrates green innovation for clean resources and hygienic food, striving to maintain Earth’s delicate equilibrium.”

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