Welcome to ISO Polar Airships, a not-for-profit organization, that was founded in 2005 to encourage the use of cargo airships in Northern Canada. Like many new ideas, the rebirth of airship technology was met with skepticism and doubt. This seems to be changing as airship activity expands around the world and the need to access remote areas increases.
The economic impact of logistical challenges in the Northern latitudes is not much different in other remote areas in the topics or elsewhere. The cost of food, housing and just about everything else is three times higher than in urban areas because of infrastructure gaps. Cargo airships can provide a sustainable solution for the remote areas world-wide that reduces transportation costs and creates opportunities for economic development.
Climate change increases the need to embrace green technologies like airships. Unreliable ice roads and melting permafrost threaten land-based connections to remote communities. In other parts of the world, rising sea levels threaten coastal and island nations. Cargo airships are an appropriate green transportation technology to meet the needs of the 21st century.
What goes around comes around. Like windmills and electric cars, giant dirigibles were a used commercially in the 1930s. All three were replaced by cheaper fossil fuel competitors. Coal-fired electrical power plants replaced the windmills, gasoline-powered cars replaced electric cars, and kerosene-burning jet airplanes replaced the dirigibles. Science and engineering have turned the tables on carbon-based technologies. Electric cars and wind turbines are two of the fastest growing industries, and in some countries, their use is being mandated. It is only a matter of time before cargo airships experience a similar market renaissance because they can offer lower costs than competing airplanes and potentially zero carbon emissions.
ISO Polar serves as a clearinghouse to exchange information and to sponsor public events where new airship developments can be assessed. The organization also serves as a collective voice of the airship community to seek the cooperation and partnership with governments and supply chain participants.