The story is this: three Uruguayans are going to cross the continentfrom Alaska to Argentine Patagonia, in two Tesla electric cars to produce a documentary series of 12 episodes that shows the sustainable initiatives that are being carried out throughout the Pacific. They will travel, from June 1 to December 15, 32,180 kilometers and 15 countries. They will stop every 380 kilometers to recharge the battery of the cars. They will carry all the necessary equipment to be able to produce the best series that they imagine. They will also carry kitesurfing and paragliding equipment because they are all three lovers of adventure sports. In each place they visit, they will contact locals to learn about the different cultures and also an athlete who will be the protagonist of each episode: they will be, the athletes, in charge of knowing, discovering and telling about the sustainable projects that the series will broadcast. Afterwards, they will return to their lives. But they know that this is not just a trip and that, in any case, this project is the beginning of something else.
Is about Oliver, Maria Jesus (Tuti) and Martín: three friends who share passions, forms and some dreams. And that for two years they have been thinking and planning, detail by detail, this trip.
It all started like this: six years ago, Martín went to live in the United States with his wife, Ana, because she was going to study. They now have two children, one two years old and one eight months old. One day, Martín and Ana decided to return to live in Uruguay. But Martin wanted to return—make the trip—without burn carbon, that is, without generating pollution: either sailing or in an electric car. Another day she called Oliver, who lived with Tuti in Holland, and told him of his intention. They wanted to join, but they didn’t want to make the trip for the trip’s sake: they wanted me to have an intention. It was February 2020. Oliver and Tuti left for San Francisco. thus was born Electric Americas: a project that became a life plan, a way of understanding the world and, above all, a way of the future.
From idea to fact
“I met Martín about 15 years ago through the world of kitesurfing and he was always super adventurous and enterprising. When he called me to tell me about his idea, his trip took us back, but we always knew that we also wanted to take the opportunity to do what we have wanted for a long time, which is to produce a type of content linked to nature, to values from sustainable living which are what we believe in and share”, says Oliver, who is dedicated to audiovisual production but has also always been linked to water sports.
Surefor her part, is a geographer, works as a consultant environmental and she is passionate about taking photos and filming. That is why Martín’s idea was ideal to combine everything they knew how to do and everything they liked.
They launched the project in 2020, before the world came to a standstill due to the pandemic. They had obtained agreements and support from different brands to finance the trip and the series, but everything was stopped. They took advantage of the time of confinement to improve the idea, to think of it as something bigger, more transcendent.
And, among all that they thought, one day they wrote: Is there life after the trip? And that’s how they came up with it: Electric Americas had to be a ONG to work financed dissemination projects for sustainable enterprises or initiatives.
“Electric Americas is an NGO founded in San Francisco. We want the money we make with this to be reinvested to carry out other initiatives with the same concept, be it touring the 19 departments of Uruguay to tell what is being done to curb climate change or on a boat touring the Mediterranean. But we also want to be able to hire people from other countries who want produce something, that want to tell a story, without the need for us to travel”, says Tuti.
That, they say, is still a dream, something pending, the place they want to move towards.
When they turned the idea back on last year, they thought about letting it go dark. “After the pandemic, it was very difficult for us to get support, there were many brands that backed down. In addition, on the one hand there is a lot of demand for electric cars but at the same time there are shortages in production, so it was also difficult for a car to sponsor us”, says Oliver.
Martin already had a Tesla and they asked for a loan to be able to get another one. Martin, his wife Ana and his two children will go in the first car, at least during the first stage of the trip. In the other, Tuti, Oliver, the athletes who participate in the series and who, along the way, want to join in helping them in the adventure.
They already know where they are going to stop or, at least, where they have points to charge the car battery. They will sleep in hostels and in hotels and in the houses of acquaintances and in places that want to receive them. There will be a map to be able to follow them in real time and, in parallel to the documentary series, they will generate content that they will share through networks and YouTube -something like a travel diary. Everything else will be discovered along the way. It’s about that too.
But why do they do it? What does this project mean to them?
“For me, although it sounds a bit cliché, it is fulfilling a dream. Since we met with Oli, eight years ago, we have dreamed of producing together something that we like, something that we really believe in, something that communicates the spirit of adventure, of caring for nature, that gives a message of sustainability”, Tuti says.
“We are looking to partner with a company like Netflix or Amazon that want to join in co-producing with us, so that the series is of higher quality. But whatever happens, the journey and the series are going to happen. For me it is a very big leap in the direction in which I personally want to go, not only in the production of content but also in aligning myself with the values and the purpose that I want for my life: to use the tools and abilities that one has to leave a positive influence,” says Oliver.
Is there life after the trip? Yes, for them yes: there is a life that, perhaps, begins after the ride.