Can the Power of the Sun Pour You a Cocktail?

© Erik Trinidad

Erik R. Trinidad blogs about his worldwide travels at @theglobaltrip.

The city-state of Singapore may be small, but that doesn't stop developers from expanding its boundaries outward by building on reclaimed land. Fortunately, the government mandates the creation of green space for every big development, and that's evident with Gardens by the Bay, the 101-hectare botanical gardens built on waterfront reclaimed land, which opened earlier this year.

More than just a horticultural park showcasing flora from around the world, Gardens by the Bay is an award-winning triumph in technology, architecture, and above all, sustainable practices. Biomass collected from pruning the gardens and city parks is converted to biomass fuel, which powers the electric chillers, dehumidifiers, and other machines used in the climate-controlled biomes. And nothing goes to waste; the ashes left over from this biomass fuel conversion process is used as fertilizer for future plants.

Also, with all the sun that shines on this nation near the equator, it should go without saying that biomass fuel isn't the only sustainable power source for Gardens by the Bay; solar power is also collected and used. The sun's energy is captured by the cells mounted on top of eighteen "Supertrees," the iconic vertical gardens which also serve as exhausts for the conservatories. And it's at the "Supertree Grove" where I decided to run a little experiment with solar power.

Singapore may be known for its strict rules, so I decided that a little irreverence was in order. And so I produced this cheeky video, where I attempted to use solar power to serve a cocktail from the OCBC Skyway, the pedestrian walkway between two Supertrees, 72 feet in the air:

Obviously, there are easier ways to serve up a Singapore Sling -- and certainly far less messy.

Tags: Alternative Energy | Alternative Fuels