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      Fortaleza, Brazil

      Energy Observer's stopover in Fortaleza: the first encounter between our laboratory vessel and the South American continent!

      Coming from: Jamestown, Saint Helena

      Weather conditions: Sunny

      Time of arrival: 12:00 AM

      Travelled distance: 3 300 NM

      Hydrogen storage level:
      Energy Observer team in Fortaleza

      An arrival marked by a 2nd transatlantic crossing

      Over 3,300 nautical miles to Brazil and a second transatlantic crossing for our laboratory vessel!

      “Despite a few wrinkles, 3 and a half years after heading north, our floating laboratory vessel crossed the South Atlantic in 23 days.It's good to be back in the Trade Wind, which has given us a near-constant energy surplus and made sailing comfortable and fast.We'll see you in 6 months for Energy Observer's last transatlantic crossing!”

      Jean-Baptiste Sanchez, Captain of Energy Observer
      Jean-Baptiste Sanchez, Captain of Energy Observer

      Sunshine, trade winds and a catamaran at the top of its game enabled the crew to reach the Brazilian coast in 23 days' sailing from Namibia for their first-ever South Atlantic crossing. A memorable crossing that we have the pleasure of (re)discovering in pictures, thanks to our onboard reporter Agathe Roullin.

      A high-energy start to our Brazilian stopover!

      Warmly welcomed by our partner Qair, we inaugurated the 83rd stopover of our Odyssey alongside our partners, local institutions and actors.

      • Launch of Energy Observer's stopover in Fortaleza
      • Launch of Energy Observer's stopover in Fortaleza
      • Launch of Energy Observer's stopover in Fortaleza
      • Launch of Energy Observer's stopover in Fortaleza
      • Launch of Energy Observer's stopover in Fortaleza

      An opportunity to mobilize major actors in the energy, hydrogen, mobility and hospitality industries of tomorrow, as well as in sustainable development, through numerous visits and conferences taking place throughout the stopover.

      “Over 10 days, we welcomed nearly 870 people on board and raised awareness of the challenges of the energy transition among numerous schools and universities. Our partners Accor, Air Liquide and Toyota were also fully involved on our side. Air Liquide through the supply of low-carbon hydrogen to power the GEH2s exhibited by Qair and Toyota through the showcase of several low-emission vehicles. Once again, this stopover demonstrates the richness and complementarity of our partners' expertise.Many thanks to the Qair Brazil teams for the success of this stopover, and for the warm welcome we received here in Fortaleza!”

      Louise Motury, Partner relations and event officer

      Fortaleza: an ambassador region for the energy transition

      Due to its favourable location in the intertropical convergence zone, Fortaleza and its region are highly favourable to the development of wind power. The north-east of the country is home to 80% of the country's wind farms.

      Among the highlights of this stopover was a visit from the governor of Cearà, Elmano de Freitas, who was able to start up the electro-hydrogen generator powering the dome and sign the creation of a green hydrogen day in the state!

      • Visit from the governor of Cearà, Elmano de Freitas
      • Visit from the governor of Cearà, Elmano de Freitas
      • Visit from the governor of Cearà, Elmano de Freitas

      The Brazilian energy sector is one of the most diversified and least carbon-intensive in the world, making it the perfect place for Energy Observer's crew to study, meet and be inspired by during this ten-day stopover.

      Silence, camera's rolling!

      During this stopover, Beatrice and Mélanie, our scientist-journalist duo, crisscrossed the São Paulo region to produce videos on Brazil's energy context, with a particular focus on ethanol: a very cutting-edge industry in Brazil. In the north, the team focused on a new green hydrogen project made possible by the Northeast's immense wind and solar potential. Surprisingly, Victorien was even able to make his baptism at the top of a wind turbine - vertiginous!

      Victorien Erussard on top of a wind turbine

      After the United States, Brazil is the world's 2nd largest producer of ethanol, a biofuel produced here mainly from sugarcane, which can be used in flex-fuel cars, either pure or blended with gasoline. The São Paulo region is home to over 90% of the country's production of this fuel, and Mélanie de Groot and Beatrice Cordiano were able to visit the São Manuel 1st-generation ethanol plant and the Raizen 2nd-generation ethanol plant in Costa Pinto - a first in Brazil and the world - to investigate the sustainability of this sector.

      Beatrice Cordiano and Mélanie de Groot in São Manuel

      The country is endowed with exceptional wind resources, with load factors averaging 40% and peaking at 60%, which explains the rapid development of this energy source and its enormous potential for large-scale, competitively-priced green hydrogen production.

      Serrote complex in Fortaleza

      In the Fortaleza region, Victorien, Beatrice and Mélanie were able to film at the Serrote complex, which combines wind turbines and photovoltaic panels for an installed capacity of over 400 MW. Installed and managed by our partner Qair, it supplies the national grid and will soon provide the green electricity needed for the future Pecem electrolyzer project.

      Victorien Erussard, Beatrice Cordiano and Mélanie de Groot at the Serrote complex in Fortaleza

      How green is Brasil?

      “It's encouraging to see that Brazil, despite already having a largely low-carbon, dynamic and extremely clean energy matrix compared with many other countries, continues to set increasingly ambitious targets. Here, the wealth of natural resources and renewable potential offer exciting prospects for the future, whether in terms of power generation, hydrogen production or alternative fuels.”

      Beatrice Cordiano, onboard scientist
      Beatrice Cordiano in Fortaleza

      “Brazil was a wonderful surprise, and we discovered the profound kindness and tranquillity of the people here. The Sao Paulo region, which we visited for our ethanol report, is extremely green and covered in sugar cane as far as the eye can see. We were able to drive on 100% ethanol (which is nothing other than fermented sugarcane juice) for 1 week. That's cool because in France we can't do that because our cars aren't adapted!”

      Mélanie de Groot, onboard reporter

      Thanks to our partner Qair for their warm welcome!

      Thanks to our partner Qair for welcoming us for this stopover, to the Accor Group, Air Liquide and Toyota for their commitment to us, to the French Embassy in Brazil and the French Consulate in Recife for their enthusiasm, and to all our partners for their support!

      Host partner

      • Logo of Qair