Volocopter–Electric Helicopter, Climate Champ Liza Goldberg and Her Cloud to Classroom, Living the Net-Zero Life

by | Aug 18, 2021 | Podcasts, The Climate Daily

Germany’s Volocopter–electric helicopter, plus climate champ Liza Goldberg. Liza and NASA’s Cloud to Classroom, and how to live the Net-Zero life.





Yesterday, Maude, you inspired me with that interesting story of the Blackfly all electric, personal aerial vehicle. Well, I thought I’d try to match that story today with one about a German entrant. It’s called the the Volo-copter 2X, and it too flew at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s AirVenture 2021 event in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, last month.

Unlike the Blackfly, which had a look all its own (or a look only a mother could love), the Volocopter looks more like a conventional helicopter, with a twist. Instead of one main rotor and one tail rotor, it sports 18 rotors. During its appearance at AirVenture, it flew over Wittman Regional Airport for about four minutes, reaching an altitude of 164 feet (50 meters) and a top speed of 18 mph (29 kph).

While the recent U.S. flight used a pilot, the Volocopter 2X can also be flown autonomously or even remotely by a pilot on the ground. The current design is much quieter than a regular helicopter and can fly for up to 18 miles (30 km) on a single charge.

Why does this matter to us? The reality is, humans aren’t going to abandon the dreams of flight, or personal flight, so electric aircraft and flights like this are helping it to raise awareness of clean and green air taxi service in urban areas globally. 

Volocopter CEO Florian Reuter said in a statement. “Air taxis are coming, and we are working to bring electric flights to cities around the globe in the next two to three years.” Ultimately regulators will have the final say about the launch of such services in cities and towns across the U.S. and beyond, with the safety of those in the aircraft, as well as those on the ground, the top priority.

No price as of yet has been announced for the Volocopter 2X.

DEEPER DIVE: Digital Trends, Robb Report, Volocopter



Mangrove forests are vital to coastal sustainability around the world. First they provide natural infrastructure and protection to nearby populated areas by preventing erosion and absorbing storm surge impacts during extreme weather events such as hurricanes and typhoons. Second, their root systems filter nutrients and pollutants from water. Third, mangrove peat acts as a shock absorber during storm surge events, absorbing much of the excess water. Fourth, mangrove forests are nursery habitats which protect many commercial fish and shellfish in the almost $8 billion-dollar seafood industry.

Unfortunately, Climate change and deforestation are resulting in the devastation of global mangrove forests – threatening the lives of thousands of species and major habitat loss.

Until recently, there was no global data tracking system for mangrove loss around the world. During a NASA internship five years ago, then 14 year-old Liza Goldberg identified this gap and created EcoMap, the first resource providing real-time information on global mangrove forest loss.

EcoMap uses satellite imagery to map where mangrove ecosystems are most threatened and why, helping scientists and conservationists identify priority regions for restoration and protection.

According to Stanford University’s online newspaper, Stanford Today, Goldberg wrote in her 6th grade journal that she would single-handedly stop climate change. Now a rising sophomore at Stanford, she realizes stopping climate change will take a massive team effort…

So… she’s evolved from EcoMap to a project called “Cloud to Classroom.” Like EcoMap, it uses satellite imagery to make the science of climate change more accessible. Says Goldberg, “Climate change is really hard for many students to understand through just statistics and news articles. But when we give them satellite images showing trends like ice melt and forest fire, it becomes a lot easier for them to visualize local to global climate impacts.

More girl power.  More positive action… To be continued.

DEEPER DIVE: Stanford Today, NASA, NBCBayArea,



And you know what, this vunderkind is no one-hit wonder. Now a Stanford University sophomore, Liza Goldberg created the Cloud to Classroom project in collaboration with Google Earth, National Geographic, and NASA to put satellite data in the hands of the world. Of it she says, “We seek to visually communicate trends of global environmental change through local-to-global scale satellite imagery analysis apps.”

Using long term data archives from satellite-based datasets, cloud to classroom can display and analyze changes on Earth’s surface from human-driven disturbances such as climate change, deforestation, urbanization, and forest fire. Cloud to Classroom seeks to make these trends accessible and understandable to the wider public through a series of interactive applications. 

Cloud to Classroom’s graphical displays are easy to read and intuitive, breaking complex concepts down into easily digestible bites. With an overwhelmingly overwhelming topic like climate change, simplicity and scaffolding—the ability to move students from simple to complex concepts by systematically building on student experience and knowledge as the student learns new skills.

Get a glimpse of Cloud to Classroom by surfing on over to www.theclimate.org/episodes and clicking on the link at the bottom of this story.

DEEPER DIVE: Cloud to Classroom, NBC, Stanford Today



What I’m about to say next, might be controversial to some. At The Climate Daily, we’re not-anti-capitalist. We’re pro climate. If there are technologies and/or companies out there that are doing big things to combat climate change, to offer and implement mitigation, adaptation and resilience strategies, we will report on them. 

One such organization is GreenBiz. According to its website, the GreenBiz Group is a media and events company that accelerates the just transition to a clean economy. Through events that galvanize, stories that amplify, peer networks that bond and industry-leading analysis, it defines markets and advances opportunities at the intersection of business, technology and sustainability. The company accomplishes that through reporting, event hosting and delivering webinars. 

This isn’t a startup taking advantage of the current wave. GreenBiz has been on the scene since 1991. One such webinar that caught our eye and fits our bill for reporting on those newsworthy items of people and groups taking action to combat climate change, is an upcoming GreenBiz webinar titled, “Inspiring Employees to Join the Net-Zero World.” Scheduled for September 2, 2021.

Here’s the concept: When a company sets net-zero goals, how should it think about the footprint of employees, particularly in an increasingly “hybrid” working world? In this webinar, moderated by Heather Clancy GreenBiz VP and editorial director, experts in employee engagement, behavior change, Scope 3 emissions and new emerging offset options will discuss the future of the “net-zero employee.”

The goal of the webcast is to teach folks how to:

  • Engage employees in sustainability and carbon mitigation efforts
  • Equip employees with their own personalized footprint and action plan
  • Incentivize employees with carbon offsets and pro-social rewards
  • Communicate and report on how individual employee actions are driving collective impacts

For more information or to sign up for the “Inspiring Employees to Join the Net-Zero World” webinar, click on the link at the bottom of this story at www.theclimate.org/episodes.

DEEPER DIVE: GreenBiz Net-Zero Webinar Registration, GreenBiz,



(BTW, I signed you up. So get ready to teach me and the rest of The Climate Daily staff how to become net-zero employees…My early birthday present to you…)